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Runners in front of the New York Stock Exchange this week. Photo: on-running.com

Investors rushed to buy shares this week of running shoes company On in its stock market debut, amid new signs that consumer spending remains resilient.

Why it matters: Apparel sales rebounded earlier this year as the economy reopened — and buying athletic apparel, especially sneakers, is one pandemic habit that’s not dying out.

  • Shares of Switzerland-based On started trading close to 50% above the IPO price, which put the value of the company at more than $6 billion.

Flashback: Brooks, Puma and Hoka were among the top performing running shoe brands during the early months of the pandemic last year, according to the NPD Group.

What they’re saying: There’s been “strengthening demand” for athleisure products and running shoes and sneakers because people are now getting back outside their homes, says Brian Nagel, managing director at Oppenheimer.

  • It's a continuation of the running boom trend that began with the start of the pandemic, he adds.

The big picture: As consumers now have the disposable income to spend more, they may be more willing to pay up for products that are “even more fashion forward, durable, and performance-driven,” says Nagel.

  • On, specifically, has ranked among retail's hottest running brands, Mitch Kummetz, senior analyst of footwear and apparel at Pivotal Research, tells Axios. 

Watch to watch: Allbirds is set to start trading on the Nasdaq next.

Go deeper

Luxury fashion marketplace Tradesy raises $67 million

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Tradesy, an online marketplace for secondhand high-end fashion goods, raised $67 million in Series D funding led by Foris Ventures, John Doerr's family office.

Why it matters: With climate change (and ESG more broadly) solidifying itself as a mainstream concern, companies like Tradesy that help consumers cut down on their consumption and waste are seeing exploding interest.

Sep 17, 2021 - Health

Retail sales increase despite low expectations from Delta

Data: FRED; Chart: Axios Visuals

Consumers defied expectations and shopped at an increasing rate amid a resurgence in COVID-19 cases.

Why it matters: Several measures of consumer confidence fell sharply in August, suggesting consumer spending could fall during the month. In fact, concerns about the Delta variant's impact on the economy had prominent Wall Street economists cutting their expectations for Q3 GDP growth.

Updated 55 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Congressman criminally charged with lying to feds

Rep. Jeff Fortenberry. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) has been indicted on charges he falsified records and lied to federal investigators probing an illegal foreign donation scheme, the Justice Department announced on Tuesday.

Driving the news: DOJ says a Fortenberry associate, who later cooperated with investigators, informed him he'd likely received illegal donations from an intermediary for a foreign national, but that Fortenberry denied any knowledge of such a scheme when contacted by the FBI.

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