Boys, if you really want to know where the economy is going, check out your underwear drawer. No I'm not joking. If you're like most men, you've got more than a few pants in, well, less than perfect condition.If you've not yet restocked your underwear collection and neither has your partner then the chances are the recession isn't over yet! Right now men's underwear sales are suggesting that things are hitting rock bottom and haven't begun to pick up againSure-this sounds trivial. If you want to know more about this, check out Underwear Men. But Alan Greenspan economist and former Federal Reserve chief, backs this theory all the way.It's thought to be one of a few unusual indicators economists use in hard times to determine the state of the current economic climate. So we've had a look through them to try and see any hint of the green shoots of an economic recovery.Inside the Underwear Indicator The reasoning behind this from Greenspan, is that because mens underwear is rarely seen, it's the first thing to get the chop when we begin to feel the pinch of a credit crunch.As strange as this theory sounds, it's not actually all that ground breaking. The study of consumer data began when we first began to see our economy dipping and increased as patterns began to emerge the deeper into the credit crunch we got. (Which Greenspan discussed with Nation Public's Radio's Robert Krulwich years back).Therefore higher demand in mens underwear should be one of the first products to rise "when the economy begins to boost again and frugal fatigue" says Marshal Cohen, the chief industry analyst with NPD Group, which tracks consumer behavior.Towards the end of last January, after a 12 month slump of 12%, mens underwear sales began to level off, suggesting a stablisation in the economy, said Cohen.For a recovery, we need to see a growth of 2% to 4% in men's underwear sales. But unfortunately according to Bill Patterson, an economic analyst at the consumer research firm, Mintel, that has happened just yet.They have so far predicted at 2% to 3% decline and it doesn't seem likely to pick up again until 2013. That's four long years of grey and sagging cotton boys.But then does that lead to the question, if consumers are used to predict growth which in itself effects recovery, if we can buy more underwear and improve predictions, do we boost our chances of recovery?Strong economies depend on consumer investment, so the more mens underwear is bought; the stronger it will make the market.Lets also not forget in the coming bleak winter months than a new pair of fashionable, comfy pants can cheer us all right up. For more info, visit Underwear Men.