Fashion spurs sales of athletic shoes

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By Matt Townsend

Running shoes meant for marathoners are this era’s Air Jordans. Shoppers more interested in making a fashion statement than actually jogging are scooping up technologically sophisticated running shoes because they’re comfortable and trendy. And they aren’t afraid to pay up. Exhibit A: Nike’s $100 Free sneaker in “hot punch,” aka pink.

Sales of such shoes in the United States surged 14 percent to $6.46 billion in the 12 months through March, according to NPD Group. First-quarter profit gains pushed up shares at retailers from Foot Locker to Dick’s Sporting Goods, evidence that a trend that began two years ago still has legs. Read the full article here.

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