FiveThirtyEight.com: 'Beer No Longer Recession-Proof'
Nate Silver at FiveThirtyEight.com runs the numbers and finds something completely unprecedented in all the time the Bureau of Economic Analysis has been tracking at-home alcohol sales: beer is no longer recession-proof.
Since 1953, when the bureau first started keeping track, the sales of alcohol have never shown any correlation between changes in consumption and changes in the nation's GDP. Alcohol sales for the fourth quarter of 2008, however, were down 9.3 percent—with beer representing almost the entire decline. An interesting bit:
Now, there are several plausible explanations for this. Alcohol sales—but particularly beer—had been on something of a hot streak prior to the 4Q, so perhaps there was some reversion to the mean. Perhaps people are substituting Michelob and Coors for more expensive microbrews like Alpha King and Dogfish Head. (This is unpatriotic, by the way, since all the macrobrews are now owned by foreign-based multinational conglomerates. Stimulate your country—and your tastebuds!).
I'll drink to that.