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Swiss Watch Exports recovered in Dec 2016 to Decline 6.2% in Jan 2017

by Jonathan Ho on February 24, 2017

We last reported that Swiss Watch Exports declined 4.6% in Dec 2016, likely propped up by a recovering China market and holiday spending valued at USD1.72 billion but January 2017 Swiss Watch Exports showed a 6.2% year-on-year decline showing that the industry remains in the negative.

While the segment is still in negative territory, the upside is that the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry  reported that even with January 2017 Swiss Watch Exports declining 6.2% or down USD1.39 billion, the downward slope has flattened across the last three consecutive months, likely a symbol of the market floor.

Chart courtesy of Federation of Swiss Watch Industry.


Swiss Watch Exports Jan 2017 Report

Steel timepieces saw a slight uptick but precious metal watch exports remained down, contributing to January’s poor performance . Meanwhile, though watches of all price tiers posted falls, surprising substantial declines were indicated for entry level watches with analysts theorising a possible return to value seeking and strategic buys rather than purchasing because of affordability.

Meanwhile, total shipments to Hong Kong were down 3.9%; in the United States up 5%, holding steady recovery which began in December with Japan posting the most substantial slide down 21.7% despite influx of Chinese tourist arrivals. Exports to China continued the uptrend since December 2016, going up 7.8% in January 2017, totalling four consecutive months of growth. Over in the Eurozone, the United Kingdom remained stable for January year-on-year, with export levels equal to January 2016. All in all, reasonable expectation for 2017 to be a period of consolidation and potential recovery for the Swiss watch industry.

Exports for watches priced in the USD 2,900 range remained stable but was still down 4.2% for January 2017.






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