Global spending on IT goods and services will grow by six per cent this year, according to a report from Forrester.

The figure trims an earlier projection put out by the analyst group of nine per cent growth worldwide, after factoring in an expected “mild recession” in the US economy in the first six to nine months of the year.

Forrester analyst Andrew Bartels said it was “by no means certain” that the US economy would shrink, but the risks were high enough to “justify a more conservative outlook for the IT market.”

The US remains the largest single market for IT goods and services, so Bartels said the global IT market was still heavily affected by what happens to the US market.

According to the research, the global market for IT purchases is estimated to be $1.7tn this year. In 2007, global IT buying grew at 12%, while US IT purchases expanded 6.2%.

Forrester said the year’s IT spending would be driven by growth in software investment – up eight per cent – and in spending on outsourced services (up nine per cent). But it said comms spending would grow at just three per cent this year, down from 12 per cent in 2007, and spending on computing hardware including PCs, servers, storage and peripherals would grow by four per cent, down from the 12 per cent leap registered in 2007.

Forrester said European growth in IT spending would be five per cent this year, but in oil and gas producing countries like Russia and the Gulf states IT purchases would grow at 12 per cent.

In the Asia Pacific region, meanwhile, growth would be strong in 2008 but not as strong as the year just gone. Overall IT purchases in the region would grow at nine per cent in 2008, it said, down from the 15 per cent growth rate in 2007.

The report, “Global IT 2008 Market Outlook,” illustrates 2008 IT spending across 15 countries. It is based on Forrester’s analysis of data from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Forrester also analysed the financial reports of 46 large IT vendors.