Jun 22, 2010 11:00:38 AM
Swiss watchmaking in May 2010
Growth at an average rate
The Swiss watch industry appears to have found its cruising speed in the spring. The value of exports in May grew at a rate close to the average for the first four months of 2010, rising by 13.0% to a level of 1.2 billion francs. This two-digit increase also had a strong positive impact on the moving average over twelve months, which should see a return to growth towards the end of the summer.
Most materials recorded an increase in value. Bimetallic watches contributed greatly to overall growth. They also performed well in volume terms, albeit to a lesser extent than the category of other materials. In May, the sector exported 200,000 more units than last year.
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Wristwatches costing between 200 and 500 francs (export price) recorded the biggest increase in May, in excess of 30%. The 0-200 and 500-3,000 francs segments showed a uniform growth rate of just under 10%. Timepieces costing more than 3,000 francs continued to make up for their sluggishness at the beginning of the year. Their value rose by 14.2% and the number of timepieces by 23.7%.
The main markets fared well in May. Hong Kong maintained its strong positive trend, while the United States continued on the path of gradual recovery. France, in third place, and Italy, fifth, recorded only moderate increases, while Germany, in eighth place, lost ground sharply (-24.0%). Maintaining a consistently dynamic performance, China doubled its May 2009 result. It is currently the third placed market after the first five months of the year. In the wake of strong showings earlier in the year, Singapore returned to a more measured, below-average rate of growth.