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Swiss Watches Keep Pace with Pre-Pandemic Levels

September 26, 2021



RAPAPORT... Swiss watch exports were on a par with pre-pandemic levels in August, as strong demand in the US and China was offset by sharp decreases in Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea.

Global shipments slipped 0.4% compared to the same month of 2019, reaching CHF 1.52 billion ($1.64 billion), the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry said last week. Exports climbed 13% year on year, reflecting a favorable comparison with the Covid-19 downturn in August 2020. The figure is the first decline after two strong months of sharp increases versus the equivalent periods of 2019. In July, global shipments jumped 8% over 2019 levels to CHF 2.05 billion ($2.23 billion), and in June, they soared 13% to CHF 1.96 billion ($2.14 billion).

“China and the US continued on a very positive trajectory,” the federation noted. “Conversely, some large markets fell sharply, including Hong Kong.”

Supply to the US grew 20% over August 2019 to CHF 212.6 million ($230 million). China saw a 55% increase to CHF 226.8 million ($245.4 million). That growth was just outweighed by a 26% decline in Hong Kong to CHF 122.8 million ($132.9 million), a 37% dip in orders to Japan, and a 32% drop in exports to South Korea.

Shipments of timepieces valued at more than CHF 3,000 ($3,246) rose 4% in relation to August 2019, while those in the CHF 500 ($541) to CHF 3,000 range dipped 3%. Orders of watches that cost CHF 200 ($216) to CHF 500 fell 17%, and those priced under CHF 200 dropped 35%.

Total exports for the first eight months of the year were comparable to those for the same period of 2019, up 0.7% to CHF 14.2 billion ($15.37 billion).

Image: A display of Swiss watches. (Shutterstock)

Article originally published on Diamonds.net here

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