Here's a recessionary factoid for your next cocktail party. In 2009, the inflation rate pulled a U-turn and turned into the deflation rate, falling by half a percentage point. Meanwhile, between 2005 and 2009, the retail-dollar compound annual growth rate of babycare supplies grew by 2 percent. Which can only mean one thing: Diapers and butt-wipes are in better shape than U.S. currency.
Hey, we didn't make this up ourselves. You'll find it on page 7 of the latest report from the indefatigable number crunchers at Packaged Facts, who've stumbled on a number of other interesting tidbits in the just-released report, "Babycare Supplies in the U.S." Go ahead and make fun, but this seldom-touted segment of the economy is worth a staggering $7 billion. What's more, not only has a (forgive us) poopy economy done little to stem the brisk sales of diapers and such (the highest performers were actually wipes and bodycare goods, which grew by 17.1 and 10.1 percent, respectively, last year), Americans plunked down more money on baby stuff even though they're having fewer babies. The U.S. birth rate stood at just 13.7 percent last year, a 43 percent plummet from the 1950s.
Which, if anything, shows that while adults may be skimping on themselves in this still-rotten economy, they're still shelling out plenty of money for Junior. And when it comes to having fresh diapers on hand, that's a thing we should probably all be thankful for. Photo via.