Jobs and Prosperity Will Come and Go, but a Bottle of Jack Will Always be There

In economics/money, food/drink, off-beat, television on December 6, 2008 by Editor Z

The current economic landscape here in the United States and abroad is no doubt grim. The unemployment rate Friday rose from 6.5% to 6.7% and the number of unutilized workers (those who have stopped looking for work and haven’t filed for unemployment, or work significantly less hours then before) have also risen. In fact the unemployment rate has seen its highest monthly rise since December of 1974 and is the largest unemployment rate since October 1993. A total of 1.8 million jobs were snuffed out this past month.

Add to that the astronomical 76% increase in foreclosures over the past year, as well as the nearly 3% rise in the third quarter of the year and the number of Americans who are falling behind and possible on a gradual slide towards foreclosure stands at 7%.

Add to that the aabysmal consumer confidence numbers and an admission (even from the White House) that we are in a recession, and we have an extraordinary economic devastation on our hands.

But there are two omissions from this tangled mass of carnage and economic statistics; gas prices are low and there is someone else doing well. A good friend known to be the refuge of those who have misery visited upon them and his name is Jack. Jack Daniels that is, and just in time for the 75th anniversary of the repeal of prohibition (which took place during another colossal economic crisis).

Bloomberg News:

Dec. 5 (Bloomberg) — Brown-Forman Corp., the maker of Jack Daniel’s and Southern Comfort, reported second-quarter profit that rose more than analysts estimated after it boosted sales of whiskey in the U.S. and Finlandia vodka in Eastern Europe. The shares climbed as much as 10 percent in New York trading.

Per-share earnings may increase to $3 to $3.20 a share for the year that began May 1 after a 12-cent gain from the expected sale of the Bolla and Fontana Candida wine brands, Brown-Forman said. Excluding the transaction and adjusting for a recent share split, the forecast was unchanged.

Consumer uncertainty during the worst credit crisis in seven decades and a recession haven’t sapped drinkers’ desire to sip Jack Daniel’s Tennessee whiskey, filtered through hard maple charcoal and priced at about $30 a liter. Investors generally regard spirits as a stable product in tough economic times and they drove the company’s shares as high as $48.34 today.



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