What Are The Recession’s Up’s And Down’s?
According to the CEO of LifeWorks Matchmaking, clients have doubled in the first quarter of 2009 compared with the previous quarter. She attributes this to “people re-evaluating their lives during periods of stress and trouble”. According to the CEO of online matchmaker eHarmony, monthly registrations have risen 20% on average from September 2008 to January 2009 compared with the same period last year. Many of the approximately 1500 independent, U.S. matchmakers – with fees ranging from a few hundred to several thousand dollars – are also seeing increases in business. Two can’t live as cheaply as one, but two can share expenses. According to owners of some licensed marijuana dispensaries in the 13 states where they are legal, the number of people who want medical marijuana has spiked in 2009. Requests have jumped form 50% to 300% since President Obama said he wouldn’t use federal marijuana laws to override state laws as President Bush did. The recession is also affecting increased demand as more people without health insurance are seeking alternatives to expensive medicines. Colorado legalized medical marijuana in June 2001 and New Mexico licensed its first marijuana producer in April 2009. For many states relieving pain with marijuana is a painful decision. According to the National Funeral Directors Association, there are more than 21,000 funeral homes in the U.S., employing approximately 105,000 people in an $11-billion-dollar-a-year industry. The Association also estimated that the average cost of an adult funeral in 2006 was $6,195. Along with everything else, people are cutting back on funereal expenses. Because cremation can save $4,000-$5,000, the Cremation Association of North America expects 40% of deceased Americans will be cremated by 2010. Everything from funeral financing to casket quality to headstone selection has been negatively affected by the recession as people make life and death decisions. According to 2002 German legislation, prostitutes are able to advertise, enter into formal labor contracts and have had the way opened for them to get health insurance. Formerly an $18 billion industry, business is down 30%-50% and Germany’s approximately 400,000 professional prostitutes are having to try new ways to attract business. Some brothels are cutting prices, others are offering day passes or all-inclusive, flat-rate fees. Other promotions include free shuttle buses, discounts for seniors and taxi drivers, rebates for golfers and loyalty cards. Because of the financial crisis, those involved in the world’s oldest profession are having to learn new tricks.