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Swiss Watch Exports -3% to $2B in December

Feb 3, 2015 8:03 AM   By Ronen Shnidman
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RAPAPORT... Swiss watch exports declined 3 percent year on year to $1.94 billion (CHF 1.80 billion) in December as exports to Hong Kong and China fell. Wristwatch exports decreased by 3 percent to $1.83 billion (CHF 1.70 billion), while other timepiece exports rose 6 percent to $108.1 million (CHF 100.2 million), according to figures provided by the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry.

Watch exports that were made from non-metallic materials dropped 10 percent to $49.5 million (CHF 45.9 million), while gold-steel watches fell 6 percent to $239.1 million (CHF 221.7 million) and gold watches dropped 5 percent to $723.7 million (CHF 671.1 million). Meanwhile, exports of Swiss watches made from metals other than gold and steel rose 14 percent to $129.6 million (CHF 120.2 million).
By volume, Swiss wristwatch exports grew  10 percent to 2.4 million units. Gold-steel watches experienced the largest increase, growing 25 percent to 117,300 units in December. Swiss watches made from metals other than gold and steel, expereinced the weakest growth by volume, rising 1 percent to 285,700 units.

The weak performance of Swiss watch exports was driven by declining demand in Greater China  and the U.S., which was only partially offset by growth in European markets and Japan. Exports to Hong Kong, the largest foreign market for Swiss watches, declined 10 percent to $338.2 million (CHF 313.6 million) Similarly, exports to China, the second-largest export market for Swiss watches, fell 27 percent to $111.9 million (CHF 103.8 million). In the U.S.,  exports dropped 1 percent to $184.4 million (CHF 171 million).

In contrast, exports to major European markets grew in December after experiencing significant declines in November. Swiss watch exports to Germany rose 2 percent to $105.7 million (CHF 98 million), while exports to Italy increased 2 percent to $104.2 million (CHF 96.6 million). In the Far East, Swiss watch exports to Japan also increased 1 percent to $110 million (CHF 102 million).

For 2014, Swiss watch exports rose 2 percent to $23.9 billion (CHF 22.2) billion, which according to the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry was the same growth rate recorded in 2013. 
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Tags: Hong Kong, Ronen Shnidman, Swiss franc, swiss watch
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