Urban legend has it that the hemline is correlated with the economy. In times of decline, the hemline moves towards the floor (decreases), and when the economy is booming, skirts get shorter and the hemline increases. We collected monthly data on the hemline, for 1921-2009, and evaluate these against the NBER chronology of the economic cycle. The main finding is that the urban legend holds true but with a time lag of about three years. Hence, the current economic crisis predicts ankle length shirts around 2011 and 2012.
Source: “The hemline and the economy: is there any match?” from Report / Econometric Institute, Erasmus University Rotterdam, 2010-07-28
For accessible books on economics I recommend Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything (P.S.) and Discover Your Inner Economist: Use Incentives to Fall in Love, Survive Your Next Meeting, and Motivate Your Dentist.
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