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INTERPUBLIC GROUP OF COMPANIES, INC. filed this Form 8-K on 07/26/2017
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Good morning, and welcome to the Interpublic Group second quarter 2017 earnings conference call. . . . I would now like to introduce Mr. Jerry Leshne, Senior Vice President of Investor Relations. Sir, you may begin.

Jerry Leshne, Senior Vice President, Investor Relations:
Good morning. Thank you for joining us.
We have posted our earnings release and our slide presentation on our website, interpublic.com. This morning we are joined by Michael Roth and Frank Mergenthaler. We will begin with prepared remarks, to be followed by Q&A. We plan to conclude before market open at 9:30 Eastern.
During this call, we will refer to forward-looking statements about our Company. These are subject to the uncertainties in the cautionary statement that is included in our earnings release and the slide presentation, and further detailed in our 10-Q and other filings with the SEC. We will also refer to certain non-GAAP measures. We believe that these measures provide useful supplemental data that, while not a substitute for GAAP measures, allow for greater transparency in the review of our financial and operational performance.
At this point, it is my pleasure to turn things over to Michael Roth.

Michael Roth, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer:
Thank you, Jerry, and thank you all for joining us this morning as we review our results for the second quarter and first half of 2017. I’ll start out by covering highlights of our performance. Frank will then provide additional detail, and I’ll conclude with an update on our agencies and the tone of business, to be followed by our Q&A.
Our organic growth slowed in the second quarter to 40 basis points, and was 1.0% excluding the impact of lower pass-through revenues. For the first six months of the year, our organic growth was 1.5%, and 1.7% excluding the impact of pass-throughs.
These results are not at the strong levels we have achieved over a number of years. Nonetheless, we continued to see positive growth momentum from a number of our agencies, notably in our media, digital and creatively driven disciplines. In Q2, we were led by increases at Mediabrands, McCann Worldgroup, Hill Holliday and Huge.
In terms of client sectors, we continued to see notable strength in healthcare, along with growth in the auto & transportation, retail and government sectors. These increases, however, were offset in the quarter by an unusually soft tech & telecom sector, along with decreases in financial services and significant cuts in consumer goods.
Regionally, U.S. organic growth was 70 basis points in the quarter, and, excluding the impact of lower pass-through revenues, was a full percent higher at 1.7%. The organic growth of our