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World Economics - Measuring Global Economic Activity and GDP

Global Marketing Index (GMI)

Released: December 29, 2016
Trading Conditions in Asia Pacific Region Plummet
  • Global Marketing Budgets continue to fall
  • TV Spending falls in The Americas and Asia Pacific but continues to rise in Europe
  • Employment growth falls in the Asia-Pacific region

The Global Marketing Headline Index fell to 51.7 in December, down from its value the previous month and the second successive fall. The rate of global marketing activity has resumed its downward path from a high three years ago. There were some regional differences with the European GMI, rising in December to reach 56.3, the third consecutive increase after six months of decline. The Headline Index for the Asia-Pacific region fell to 48.3, below the 50.0 ‘no change’ level, indicating a fall in marketing activity. In the Americas, marketing activity fell for the third successive month with an index value recorded of 49.4.

The Global Marketing Budgets Index in December recorded a value of 49.2, virtually unchanged on the month before but showing a fall in budgets for the fourth successive month. The gloomy global picture was put in relief by the situation in Europe where the index rose to 54.7, the third rise in a row and continuing a recovery from the low point of September following the negative impact on sentiment of the Brexit referendum result. Marketing budgets fell in the Asia-Pacific Region, where a value of 46.0 was registered, down from November. In the Americas, budgets also fell with an index value of 45.2 recorded, the sixth consecutive month of declining spending. The Global Trading Conditions Index fell in December to 53.1. The index also fell in the Americas, rose slightly Europe and fell back in the Asia-Pacific Region to show a decline in trading conditions at 49.4.

Spending on traditional media (TV, Press, Radio and OOH) continued to fall, with some sector and regional exceptions. Spending on TV fell globally and in all regions apart from Europe, which saw a successive monthly increase to a strong index level of 54.6 in December. Press and Radio fell globally and in all regions. OOH fell globally and in all regions apart from Europe, where spending on the medium grew slowly with an index level recorded of 51.7. In December, Digital and Mobile media continued their rapid expansion and share of marketing budgets globally and across all regions

The Staffing Index, which reflects the number of staff taken on compared to the same period last year, saw growth globally with an index value of 52.8 recorded in December. This was down by 1.2 on the month before and was the eighth successive monthly fall in the value of the index. Employment fell in the Americas, was almost stagnant in the Americas, but grew at a strong, albeit declining pace in Europe, with an index recorded of 57.4.


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The Global Marketing Index results are calculated by taking the percentage of respondents that report that the activity has risen (“Increasing") and adding it to one-half of the percentage that report the activity has not changed (“Unchanged"). Using half of the “Unchanged" percentage effectively measures the bias toward a positive (above 50 points) or negative (below 50 points) index. As an example of calculating a diffusion index, if the response is 40% “Increasing," 40% “Unchanged," and 20% “Reducing," the Diffusion Index would be 60 points (40% + [0.50 x 40%]). A value of 50 indicates "no change" from the previous month.

The more distant the index is from the amount that would indicate "no change" (50 points), the greater the rate of change indicated. Therefore, an index value of 58 indicates a faster rate of increase than an index value of 53, and an index value of 40 indicates a faster rate of decrease than an index value of 45. A value of 100 indicates all respondents are reporting increased activity while 0 indicates that all respondents report decreased activity.

The July 2016 release uses the un-adjusted data for the commentary to show the impact of the UK referendum on the European and global data. Un-adjusted and moving average indexes are available with a data subscription. 

About the Global Marketing Index 
The World Economics Global Marketing Index (GMI) provides a unique monthly indicator of the state of the global marketing industry, by tracking current conditions among marketers.

Our global panel (2,000+ members) consists of experienced executives working for brand owners, media owners, creative and media agencies and other organisations serving the marketing industry. The panel has been carefully selected to reflect trends in the three main global regions: Americas, Asia Pacific and Europe.

About World Economics
World Economics is an organisation dedicated to producing analysis, insight and data relating to questions of importance in understanding the world economy. Its parent company Information Sciences Ltd has a long history of the development of key business information today used throughout the world, including the origination of the Purchasing Managers Indexes in Europe and Asia (now owned by Markit) .

Currently our primary research objective is to encourage and assist the development of better and faster measures of economic activity. In cases where we believe we can contribute directly, as opposed to through highlighting the work of others, we are producing our own measures of economic activity.

Our work is mainly of interest to investors, organisations and individuals in the financial sector and to significant corporations with global operations, as well as governments and academic economists.
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