Bloomberg Anywhere Remote Login Bloomberg Terminal Demo Request


Connecting decision makers to a dynamic network of information, people and ideas, Bloomberg quickly and accurately delivers business and financial information, news and insight around the world.


Financial Products

Enterprise Products


Customer Support

  • Americas

    +1 212 318 2000

  • Europe, Middle East, & Africa

    +44 20 7330 7500

  • Asia Pacific

    +65 6212 1000


Industry Products

Media Services

Follow Us

Bloomberg Customers

The Real Cost of Being Clean

By Lewis Braham - 2013-07-16T19:53:16Z

Photograph by Lius Real/Getty Images

Company Symbol % Change
1 of 16

Out, Damned Spot!

If Lady Macbeth had washed with Ivory and carried around Purell, maybe she wouldn’t have cried “Out, damned spot!” America’s obsession with cleanliness is the stuff of (marketing) legend. To look at us wringing away with the Purell, you'd think we had blood on our hands. Despite the worst recession since the Great Depression, U.S. soap, bath and shower product sales grew 25 percent to $5 billion from 2007 through 2012, according to market research firm Mintel. Here's a look at what our molysmophobia (yes, that's what the morbid fear of germs is called) costs us.