Gartner and Forrester cut US IT predictions

Gartner and Forrester have both lowered their expectations of spending on technology in the US this year. Both acknowledged they had underestimated the speed and scale of the global downturn.

Gartner forecast a 3.8% drop in spending worldwide to $3,200bn, compared with the $3,400bn recorded in 2008. Three months ago, it was predicting a modest rise in spend this year over last year. The analyst also pointed out that the decline it now predicts is worse than the 2.1 fall in IT spending in 2001, after the dot-com bubble.

Gartner predicts a 15% decline in computer hardware shipments, a 3% fall in telecoms, 2% drop in IT services and 0.3% growth in software sales.

Forrester overturned its previous forecasts for US businesses and government on IT goods and services, almost doubling previous predictions of falling spend. It said it expected sales to shrink by 3.1% in 2009, compared with the 1.6% it previously suggested.