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Maybe Just All the Growth in Luxury Watches Is Coming From China

  • Apple Watch trounces mechanical timepieces in U.S. market
  • Exports of Swiss timepieces to China rose 40% in November
Opening Day Of The Baselworld 2017 Luxury Watch Show
Photographer: Michele Limina/Bloomberg
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The U.S. economy is booming, unemployment is low and the White House is occupied by a president synonymous with ostentatious luxury. Why, then, have Americans stopped buying expensive watches?

Swiss watch exports to the U.S. fell 0.4 percent in November, extending the decline for the year so far to 4 percent after a 9 percent drop in 2016. By contrast, sales surged 40 percent for the month in China -- the biggest jump in almost three years -- as the industry recovers from a multiyear slump.