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Rebounds in US and China Lift Swiss Watch Exports

June 20, 2023  |  Leah Meirovich

Swiss watch exports rose sharply in May as the US market rallied and China continued to recover.

Shipments of timepieces climbed 14% year on year to CHF 2.34 billion ($2.61 billion) for the month, the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry reported Tuesday. The increase marked the fifth straight month of growth this year.

“Swiss watch exports grew at a particularly strong pace in May,” the organization said. “The five-month trend remains very positive across the board.”

Supply to the US jumped 10% to CHF 359.4 million ($400.9 million) following a 4.9% decline in April. Shipments to China surged 158% to CHF 237.4 million ($264.9 million), benefiting from a favorable comparison with the same month a year ago, when Shanghai was in lockdown. Exports to Hong Kong “recovered rapidly” as tourists returned, up 19% to CHF 227 million ($253.3 million). Those rises outweighed a “significant decline” of 22% in orders from South Korea, the federation noted.

Watches priced under CHF 200 ($223) saw the most improvement, soaring 27% year on year. Items worth between CHF 500 ($558) and CHF 3,000 ($3,349) gained 15%, as did the CHF 3,000-plus category. Exports of timepieces valued from CHF 200 to CHF 500 slipped 3.7%.

During the January-to-May period, Swiss watch exports advanced 11% year on year to CHF 10.88 billion ($12.15 billion).

Image: A display of Swiss watches. (Shutterstock)


Rebounds in US and China Lift Swiss Watch Exports

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