Recession hits the brothel business

One Nevada madam says clients no longer have as much money to spend, and she worries about the fiscal cliff negotiations in Washington.

By Kim Peterson Nov 29, 2012 1:01PM
The world's oldest profession took a hit during the recession as customers were forced to cut back on their, uh, entertainment expenses. But just when a recovery seemed under way, even prostitution has become a victim of the fiscal cliff, CNBC reports.

In this video, the madam who runs the famous Mustang Ranch brothel in Nevada says business has been better. Susan Austin thought prostitution would be recession-proof, but that didn't happen.
"When a lot of my high rollers all of a sudden discovered they didn't have the discretionary income and they couldn't play as hard as they used to, well that definitely dug into their wallets which definitely affected us," she told CNBC's Jane Wells.Image: Couple holding hands (Corbis/Corbis)

The company doesn't count prostitutes among its employees. Instead, the prostitutes work as independent contractors that negotiate prices with customers and then pay Mustang Ranch a commission, Wells reports. If customers decide to use one of the larger, nicely decorated suites, it can add $1,000 to their bill.

The Ranch has been forced to drop prices on its "Pleasure Menu." And though it's tough to imagine the fiscal cliff being a top conversation topic there, Austin seems to be worried about the potential of higher taxes and a heavier burden on the rich that the fiscal cliff may bring.

"Anything that happens in Washington affects everybody in the United states," she said. "It's going to trickle down to me sooner or later. So it's definitely going to hurt me in the end."

More from Money Now

Nov 29, 2012 5:27PM
Good I hope they go out of business, and stop tempting men who are married from going to hell. Have some respect for yourselves and stop screwing with mens lives.  How disgusting to even think about a woman who has screwed every tom, dick, and harry.
Nov 29, 2012 5:26PM
I'm guessing the price of going down is going up!
Nov 29, 2012 5:14PM
Hurt her in the END. Hmmm.  Thought she was into that stuff....
Nov 29, 2012 4:51PM
They aren't coming to Vegas, so they aren't coming at The Bunny Ranch. Plus, everything you want to see is available a few clicks away.
Nov 29, 2012 4:45PM
Wouldn't hunting, fishing or farming be the world's oldest profession?
Nov 29, 2012 4:30PM
Say it ain't so!
I got's me no Ho
Now where do I go?
I go to the sto
and get me a 40
instead of a shorty
That's what I know

Nov 29, 2012 4:12PM

Difference between a hooker and a lawyer/politican?

Hooker can't phuck a dead man.

Nov 29, 2012 3:38PM
I thought the World's Oldest Profession was being a deadbeat in Washington leeching off of the public dime while wasting the nation's time.

Congress never had the ability to fix us. They are the problem, not authors of solution.

Nov 29, 2012 3:34PM
With fewer customers you would think she would be "hurt in the end" a little less often...
Nov 29, 2012 3:14PM
It's a sad day in hell when a rich man can't afford a whore!  That's why they need a tax cut. Now I know what types of jobs the rich are starting up.  
Nov 29, 2012 2:49PM
This is awful! Support America go rent a ho.
Nov 29, 2012 2:22PM
Thank God for Harry Reid. He has saved the country and if he lives long enough he will be President. Just think of all the money he got for Nevada for the Yucca Mountain project and then bailed out. What a shrewd man. He sure knows how to work the federal system and bring home the bacon to his home state. Now ya talkin prostitute man!!
Nov 29, 2012 2:18PM
Now if the clown's in DC could only abide by that saying....
Nov 29, 2012 1:22PM
Know what they say----No MONEY--NO HONEY!
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