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Swiss Watch Exports to USA Drop Nearly 50% in February

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The Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry reports that the value of Swiss watch exports to the U.S. market declined in February by 47.5% compared with February 2008 levels. For the first two months of 2009, the value of exports to the U.S.A. is down 38% compared with the same period last year. Hardest hit were watches priced at 500 to 3000 Swiss francs (about $445 to $2670 at press time), sales of which were down by more than 40% in terms of both units and value. Exports of watches priced at 200 to 500 francs or $178 to $445 were down about 33%.

Watches priced above 3000 francs fared best, registering a decline of 6.6% by value and a bit over 10% in units. Based on materials, as might be expected, steel watches were the hardest hit with exports down about 29% based on units and value. Gold/steel bimetallic watches were off about 37% based on units and value. Exports of platinum watches increased 9.7% by value while falling 13% measured in units. Looking at the bigger picture, Switzerland exported 1.4 million watches in February 2009, or 28.4% fewer than in the same month last year.






About Mike Disher

Mike Disher's interest in watches dates to 1972, and he caught the internet bug in 1997. In 1999 he combined these interests by joining TimeZone.com as its first full-time employee, and later that year attended his first Basel Fair. Disher managed TZ from 2000-2007, and joined WatchTime in 2008.

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