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The NY Times recently published a piece documenting the growing rise of young footwear traders. In the era of hyper-inflated resale prices for sneakers, kids barely in their teens can be found at events trading and selling thousands of dollars worth of shoes. The article includes insights from older collectors who draw parallels between the boom in footwear trading and that of baseball cards in the ’90s. The piece also tells the story of one Jonathan Rodriguez, 18, from Deer Park, New York, who turned down $98,000 USD for a pair of Nike Air Yeezy 2 “Red Octobers” that he managed to get signed at one of Kanye West’s recent concerts. See the whole article at the NY Times with selected quotes below.
“Reselling basketball sneakers has become a cultlike atmosphere,” said Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst of the NPD Group. “No one is watching over all this money changing hands. So it seems like it’s being done underground, but it’s perfectly legal. And it’s exciting to them because it’s a real form of income.”
“I know I could buy a house with this kind of money,” said the vendor, Jonathan Rodriguez, 18, of Deer Park, N.Y., who said he planned to enlist in the Air Force. “But I’m a huge Kanye West fan. I can just work to get the money. The only way I’m selling them is if there is a reason that I need to sell or I’m offered life-changing money.”