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Swiss Watch Exports Slip 12% in October

Nov 19, 2015 2:47 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... Swiss watch exports fell 12.3 percent year on year to $2 billion (CHF 2 billion) in October as exports to Hong Kong, China and the U.S. fell. Wristwatch exports decreased by 13 percent to $1.9 billion, while other timepiece exports declined 4.4 percent to $119 million, according to figures provided by the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry.

The poor result stems primarily from an acute contraction of the main markets of Asia and the United States, the Federation said.

All major categories of watches fell in value terms during the month. The largest drop in exports occurred in watches made from gold and steel, which slid 22 percent to $260 million. The second-largest drop occurred in precious-metal watches, which decreased 12 percent to $704 million, while exports of steel watches also fell 12 percent to $725 million.

By volume, the decline in Swiss wrist-watch exports was gentler, falling 9 percent to 2.6 million units during October. Precious-metal and steel watches experienced declining export volume, while gold-steel watches rose 16 percent to 136.9 million units, and other metals increased 1 percent to 319 million.

Exports to key consumer markets dropped substantially, with sales to Hong Kong down 39 percent to $258 million, exports to the U.S. down 12 percent to $232 million and sales to China declining 5 percent to $120 million. Exports to Italy and Germany both dropped, by 4 percent and 5 percent respectively.

Hong Kong registered its severest setback of the year and continued its downward spiral. The United States also lost ground following what was already a poor September. "These two consecutive months of decline brought to an abrupt halt the steady growth that had prevailed," the Federation statement noted.

By price point, exports of luxury Swiss watches worth $3,100 (CHF 3,000) or more declined 14 percent, while exports of Swiss watches priced between $492 (CHF 500) and $3,100 declined 7 percent.
Tags: exports, Rapaport News, swiss, Switzerland
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