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Study: Height of women's heels linked to economy

3:12 PM, Nov 22, 2011   |    comments
TV personality Heidi Klum (shoe detail) arrives at the 2011 American Music Awards held at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE on November 20, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)
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(CNN) -- A new study suggests women are choosing lower heeled shoes and those high heels may soon be tossed in the back of the closet.

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IBM says they've been monitoring billions of social media posts and heel heights are about to decline.

Researchers say usually when the economy is bad, skirts get shorter and heels get higher. That's because people turn to them as a means of fantasy and escape. In fact, over the last 100 years, high heels soared during the worst recessions.

So if times are tough, why are heel heights getting lower?

IBM says the move to a lower heel may indicate a mood of "long term austerity" that's evolving among consumers.

The study says high heels won't disappear altogether, but even high-end shoe designers like Jimmy Choo and Christian Louboutin are beginning to offer more kitten heels and flats.

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