Thursday, September 3, 2009

Superman is Buying New Underwear: Good News for the Economy?

reprinted from
According to the Washington Post, another unfortunate effect of the recession has been a slowing in the sale of men's underwear. In fact, it is predicted that sales are to fall 2.3% this year, which is the first drop since the company Mintel had begun collecting data in 2003. As they put it:

Here's the theory, briefly: Sales of men's underwear typically are stable because they rank as a necessity. But during times of severe financial strain, men will try to stretch the time between buying new pairs, causing underwear sales to dip.

That is unfortunate for heroes like Superman, who wear their underwear on the outside. If Superman is forced to purchase less underwear and wears the same few pairs each day as part of his crime fighting routine, I think this poses are pretty significant hygiene issue. Plus, it's disgusting. That is, unless he just spends more time doing laundry. But he's Superman, remember? He has no time for laundry!

Worry not, however, citizens of Metropolis. There is good news.

But the men's underwear index -- or, conveniently, MUI -- may also have a silver lining. Mintel predicts that next year, men's underwear sales will fall by 0.5 percent, and as with many economic indicators, a slowing of a decline can be welcomed as a step in the right direction. Retailers are reporting encouraging signs in the men's underwear department.

If underwear sales is indeed an adequate economic indicator, then Superman should be back to his regular, clean self in no time.



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