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Industry study says ad-supported Internet is 3.7% of US economy

WASHINGTON--The advertising-supported Internet “ecosystem” generated US$530 billion last year and supported 5.1 million jobs in the United States, an industry study said Monday.

The study released by the Interactive Advertising Bureau said the economic value of online industries has roughly doubled since 2007.

Researchers from the Harvard University Business School commissioned by the IAB, said this amounted to 3.7 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) last year, up from 2.1 percent four years ago.

“The substantial economic impact of the Internet — through its evolution and dynamism — has been borne out by this study,” said study author John Deighton.

The report, “Economic Value of the Advertising-Supported Internet Ecosystem,” was unveiled at the annual IAB conference to quantify the significant role the ad-supported digital sector plays in the broader U.S. economy.

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