Hemline Index

hemlineThe year is 1926, the middle of the roaring ‘20's. A guy named George Taylor, an economist, presented a "theory" according to his observation: that hemlines go up when the economy is good, and hemlines go down when the economy is bad.

This might seem silly, but the Econometric Institute Erasmus School of Economics did a study, comparing the economy to the hemlines from 1921 to 2009. They found that the theory holds true - however, sometimes there is as much as a 3 yr lag time.


Here is the conclusion paragraph of their report:

Based on the analysis of actual data on the hemline, which goes back to January 1921, we found that the economic cycle leads the hemline with about three years. Supporting the urban legend, we find that poor economic times make the hemlines to decrease, which means that women’s dresses get lower, and that prosperity is correlated with a reduced hemline (more miniskirts). At the same time, and this is new to the available evidence, we find that there is a time lag of around three years. This explains why at present, in an economic downturn, the skirts are short, as this is simply due to the fact that the economy was in a boom about three years ago.

So ... prosperity means less cloth, and vice versa. What does this really mean?

They now have a "lipstick" indicator. Where women buy lipstick to look good when they don’t have the money to buy clothing. I would think there should be a men’s "tie indicator" as well.

Personally, I think that it is a spiritual indicator. See Mt.6:21. Prosperity has always been a conundrum. Money has never made hearts evil, but it can give to many the security medium to express their depravity. Is it a tongue-in-cheek to say that there is a silver lining to a down economy? Who would have thought that less ($) would mean more (cloth)? Then again - God’s economy is different than ours. Maybe that is the root of it all. We have more invested in the world’s economy than God’s.

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