The Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry FH reported a 9.2 per cent drop in Swiss watch exports in February, reflecting Covid-19's impact on consumer demand.
All product categories were on the downswing but watches priced CHF3,000 (around US$3,072) and above saw the slowest rate of decline at 1.3 per cent, which was almost the same level as last year, the federation said.
Goods under the CHF200 to CHF500 (around US$205 to US$512) price range fell by as much as 52.5 per cent while those priced below CHF200 francs, and between CHF500 and CHF3,000 were down 18 per cent.
The sector shipped a total of 1.3 million watches in February, 380,000 fewer compared to the same period last year.
Most Asian markets weakened during the period in review, led by Hong Kong, which plunged 42 per cent – its worst monthly decline in the last 20 years. Exports to China slid by 51.5 per cent.
The US meanwhile recorded a 17.8 per cent increase in Swiss watch exports, benefitting from a favourable base effect.
Shipments to the UK were down 18.9 per cent but continued growth was seen in Germany (7.3 per cent), France (12.6 per cent) and Italy (5 per cent).