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Fashion Week on Wall Street: Are Socks the New Ferragamo Tie?

Daily Ticker

Wall Street's a road with a river on one end, a graveyard at the other and lots of suits in-between. But if you look down, you might notice something else: bright, patterned and wacky socks!

The days of the Gold Toe black sock seem to be numbered. Pants end higher, ties are less popular and bankers who are yearning for subtle ways to express themselves are looking toward their feet.

The American sock industry is no joke; it brought in $4.22 billion in the 12-month period ending last April. And we’re not just talking Hanes (HBI). According to The Wall Street Journal, sales of men’s socks at specialty stores grew 39% in 2012.

Smaller companies specializing in patterned and colorful socks are popping up all over America. Sock It To Me, a sock supplier based in Portland, Ore., made $5 million in sales last year.

Strideline Socks, a company with two 22-year-old employees (and that's it), saw sales rise almost 600% between 2011 and 2012.

These socks aren’t cheap either; prices range from $10 all the way to $100 per pair.

In honor of New York Fashion Week and the end of summer working hours, The Daily Ticker investigated what lies beneath the pant hems of those working in the financial and business world.

Damani Ali, training manager at Thomas Pink, a luxury retailer renowned for its colorful sock selection, has noticed an uptick amongst certain sets.

“We’re seeing a lot of guys working in finance and law being more comfortable wearing bolder colors,” he tells The Daily Ticker.

On the streets, there are mixed opinions. Some made fun of their coworkers who dared to show some style with their hosiery choices, others donned funky footwear on a daily basis.

Our very own Henry Blodget says he wore wacky socks in his college days but now it’s all about “boring, black, cheap socks.”

Watch the video above to see Aaron Task's new shoe and sock combo, along with the choices of men on the streets of New York City.

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