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Google, Oprah looking hot in '06
Annual Newsmaker Brands survey predicts high-tech and celebrity brands will sparkle next year.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) - What do Google, Oprah Winfrey, Las Vegas and the iPod have in common? These four are among the top 10 brands expected to sizzle in 2006, according to a published report Thursday.

The second annual list of image winners and losers from marketing firms Landor Associates and Penn Schoen & Berland also shows that consumers will continue to favor high-tech and feel-good brands next year, the paper said.

The list was based on a Newsmaker Brands survey which asked 1,744 consumers to rank 61 of the biggest brand newsmakers of the year -- products and celebrities -- on their performance this year and prospects in the year ahead, the report said.

The biggest category on the rise was technology, with Google, eBay, Amazon, Yahoo!, iPod and digital video recorders among the top 10 predicted winners in the new year, the paper said. Google tops the forecast for 2006.

Talk show queen Oprah Winfrey was second only to Google on the list of predicted winners in 2006, the report said.

Meanwhile, pop singer Britney Spears was ranked as the top predicted loser in 2006, followed by troubled air carrier United Airlines, the report said.

Both Donald Trump and his reality show "The Apprentice" made the 2006 loser list, the paper said. So did radio "shock jock" Howard Stern, who moves from free radio to satellite service Sirius on Jan. 9. The Hummer also got the thumbs down with consumers, the report said. Top of page

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