There’s no denying that the watchmaking industry is going through some tough times, with layoffs punctuating low (and falling) export numbers. In fact, according to the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry FH, this past October saw the steepest fall of the year despite a predicted recovery, and trends seem to indicate that things aren’t going to get better across most markets any time soon. Bloomberg reports “the number of watches Switzerland exports is on track to reach the lowest level since 1984, when digital timepieces were in vogue and Swatch Group AG had just been formed in reaction to low-cost competition.”
This month’s full report from FH reveals that, once again, stainless steel watches are doing better than those made of precious metals. In terms of markets, Hong Kong remained stable and the United Kingdom was one of the few positive markets in Europe (likely benefiting from the lower parity of the pound following Brexit). There we also some gains in the Chinese market. The United States, however, recorded its worst results of the year after March, reporting an 18% drop.