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Why do Swiss, Japanese watch collectors enjoy more returns?

Watch collections of users in both countries have appreciated an average of 40% since the date of purchase, shows Chrono24 data

Grand Seiko SBGW287.
Grand Seiko SBGW287. (Courtesy Grand Seiko)

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Owners of luxury watches based in Switzerland and Japan are enjoying more financial returns compared to collectors in other parts of the world, says data by Chrono24, a trading platform.

According to a Bloomberg report, “Watch collections of Chrono24 users in both countries have appreciated an average of 40% since the date of purchase. In contrast, returns for collectors based in the Netherlands were 24% while the value of watches owned by German collectors gained 25%.”

Also read: Gen Z is finding time for second-hand luxury watches

The report states that since Switzerland and Japan are both major watch producing countries, it perhaps gives residents better insight into luxury watch values as well as access to greater supply. 

The Chrono24 data was based on anonymous data provided by the platform's users and 1.3 million watch collections tracked on its website. The average collector in Switzerland owns about 6 watches with a total value of about €45,000 ($48,494) while an average Japanese collector owns the same number of watches with an average total worth of about €64,000, adds the Bloomberg report.

A rare Patek Philippe watch, meanwhile, was sold for $5.8 million in Hong Kong, the highest price ever paid for a timepiece in an online auction, earlier this week.

“There continues to be an extremely vibrant market for watches across the world, evidenced through the avid global bidding this sale witnessed,” Alexandre Bigler, the vice-president and head of watches at Christie’s Asia Pacific, said in a statement.

According to a Bloomberg report, the Patek Philippe Sky Moon Tourbillon, with a blue hand-made enamel dial and white gold hand-carved case, fetched HK$45.45 million, auction house Christie’s said in a statement.

“The price shows collectors are still willing to shell out for rare watches despite troubling issues in the banking sector. Expensive watches are a favorite luxury splurge for bankers using cash from annual bonuses but they are now facing troubled times after the emergency takeover of Credit Suisse Group AG by country rival UBS Group AG and the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank,” the Bloomberg report adds.

Also read: The 17 best watches to buy as gift that aren’t Rolexes


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