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Swiss watch exports fall

Swiss watch exports sagged for the seventh month because as falling shares and slowing economies hurt demand for luxury timepieces in their major markets.    

The two largest consumers for Swiss watch exports – the USA and Hong Kong should be solely blamed for this global downturn, as the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry states.

In January, shipments sagged 8% to $1.53 billion or 1.52 billion francs, according to information from Switzerland’s customs office. Undoubtedly, that’s a drastic change compared to a 3.7% revenue in the same month of 2015.   

Watchmakers such as Cartier and Rolex have been hurt by a double whammy of high production costs because of the strong franc, not to mention unstable demand in China. Apparently, exports fell 3.3% in 2015. That’s the first annual slump since 2009.    

All price segments reported considerable declines. It applies to timepieces ranging from 200 francs to 500 francs. Such items sagged 12% in value terms.  

In January, exports to Hong Kong dipped for the twelfth month, going down 33%, the sharpest dip since October. Secondly, Swiss watch sales to China got back to their decrease after two months of revenues, falling 1.9%.  

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