Tonight I saw no less than four ads for 'sexy' commercials for products. From 'sexy' makup to 'sexy' undergarments, it was a veritable cornucopia of underweight, over-painted, and under-dressed women (and a few leather-coated men). The topper was the advertisement from JCPenny, of all retailers, with few words, lots of innuendo, high heels, and leather coats.
The last time I saw such overt advertising was the Victoria's Secret SuperBowl-advertised online lingerie show that clogged the internet back in 1999. And while that is an interesting story on it's own, I find it a good example of my new theory of predicting recessions: overtly sexual advertising is the harbinger of recessions. As advertising agencies run out of ideas that work due to a cooling economy, they inevitably turn to sex as the path to sales. But it's a last-ditch effort in an already softening market.
Things have gotten increasingly 'sexy' on TV lately and are getting 'sexier' (and I mostly skip commercials with a TiVo, so I may be underestimating the extent). Between that and other indicators, I expect the recession to hit somewhere between April and August of next year (though I hope I'm wrong and it never happens).
Don't go crazy this holiday season...