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Report: IT budgets expected to have a steady hand in 2008

Despite economic gloom and doom, IT budgets are expected to largely remain unchanged this year, according to a Gartner CIO study to be released next week.

Despite gloom and doom hitting the economy, the fear factor largely hasn't eroded IT budgets for this year, according to a Gartner CIO study to be released next week.

IT budgets worldwide are expected to grow 3.3 percent this year, and 62 percent of those surveyed by Gartner expect their budgets will remain unchanged despite the changing economic winds.

And surprisingly, 15 percent of the CIOs surveyed said they plan to increase their budgets this year, by 15 percent on average. Woohoo.

While all this may cause a sigh of relief among IT providers, the industry isn't totally out of the woods.

Of the 1,011 CIOs surveyed during a four-week period spanning mid-February through March, 23 percent said they planned to cut spending on average by 10 percent. And in the U.S., the growth rate for IT spending is slowing to 2.3 percent for the year, from a growth rate of 3.1 percent in the previous period.

"Overall, the majority of CIOs reported no change in their 2008 committed budgets. This indicates that IT budgets are not the 'target rich' environment for cost cutting they have been in the past. However, there is some softness, particularly in the U.S.," said Mark McDonald, research head for Gartner Executive Programs, in a statement.

Win some, lose some.