- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A job layoff turned lucky for one Spanish businessman, who used his down time from work to invent a new form of investing that taps into the nation’s mood toward banks: A locked unit that’s built into a bed mattress.

“I had a hunch that this new product would sell,” said Paco Santos, who worked at the nation’s largest mattress manufacturing company, until he was let go three years ago, Time reported, “You see, we’ve got a big economic problem in Spain and people have really lost confidence in the banks.”

His invention: A plush and padded mattress with a keypad-operated safe that’s built right into the side, Time reported. And they’ve already sold quite a few, Mr. Santos, 57, said in Time.

“Banks are in the headline now because of Cyprus, but in Spain, we have known how dangerous they can be for several years,” he said, Time reported. “People were starting to say it was better to keep it under your mattress.”

Mr. Santos turned that mood into a neat advertising campaign for a timely product that capitalized on the ancient practice of stashing cash in the mattress — albeit with a lock-and-key security improvement.

Spain is suffering from record unemployment, especially for those with little experience in the job market. The jobless rate for those under the age of 25 is 57 percent, the Financial Times reported.

“It is much worse to be a young person coming out of college today in Spain than 10 years ago, said Javier Diaz-Gimenez, an economist in Madrid, in the Financial Times.

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