The Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry (FH) announced that the value of Swiss watches exported for the first six months of this year topped $4.34 billion, rising 11 percent over the same period last year and exceeding forecasts.
Finished watches constituted the bulk of that growth, FH reports. The value of finished Swiss watch exports reached $3.95 billion for the six-month period, growing 12.3 percent compared to the same period in 2004.
Gold watches represented nearly half that growth by value and comprised 20.3 percent of finished Swiss watch exports for the period. Bimetallic watches, which represented 20.9 percent of the period's finished watch exports, and steel watches, which comprised 8.2 percent, were also credited with fueling finished Swiss watch exports' growth in value for the first half of the year.
While the value of finished Swiss watch exports grew in the first half of the year, the number of units exported dropped 6.8 percent from last year to 11.2 million watches. Other Swiss watch exports for the period—such as movements, dials and bracelets—held steady for the period, varying less than 2 percent from their export values recorded for the same period last year.
In terms of market share, the United States remained Switzerland's largest importer of Swiss watch and clock products, taking $740.1 million in value for the six-month period, up 14 percent over last year. Hong Kong, Japan, Italy and France rounded out the top five markets for Swiss watch and clock exports for the first half of 2005.
Source : FH (Nationaljeweler.com)