Markets around the world are panicking after it emerged that a group of speculators had cornered the world's sock futures.
Prices of socks dropped like a stone when the FTSE opened this morning after a late flurry of selling in eastern markets. Wall Street reacted similarly hours later.
It has emerged that an agressive group of speculators based on the Isle of Wight has been buying up sock futures over the last few weeks.
Confirmation came at lunchtime today when a spokesman for traders Lombardy Skinnem said they were working for the group.
She said: "Our clients are a group of goldfish and assorted carp domiciled on the Isle of Wight. Our instructions have been to acquire a large majority holding in socks futures, which we have done.
"We are, at this time, unable to divulge our clients' intentions."
In Whitehall, treasury officials have been meeting all morning to prepare strategies for response.
EIF News & Features financial affairs correspondent, Vern Spondoolix, said: "I haven't a clue what all this means - I don't even know if it makes sense.
"Does it make sense? Can someone explain? Please?"