Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated
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  1. #1
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    Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    Back to the question of price. As watch lovers, we all want what we like and what we usually cannot afford, not everyone's got 10 grand just laying around. Watch prices have become more and more inflated and ridiculously so.

    Take a look at history, people in the 50s or 60s earned less than we do today, that's after adjusting their income to today's dollar. Nonetheless, they could afford well-made mechanical watches, which are also a lot cheaper if adjusted to today's dollar. The value in watches back then is exponentially greater than today. When looking at vintage movements, we often see well finished bridges and plates, beveled edges, decorations like perlage, even i run of mill everyday watches.

    Today, on the contrary, mechanical watches evolved from primarily a tool to primarily a piece of jewelry, and this allowed companies to basically rip us off in whatever way they desire provided that their brands are establish and have great marketing campaigns. Today, what used to be common has become a luxury, do terms like "hand-made" or "tradition" or "watch that has a soul" really justify charging over 30 or 40 grand for a stainless steel dress watch? I don't think so. Companies attribute value and the high price o craftsmanship and pedigree, but really, how much of the money goes to craftsmen and how many companies are not a subsidiary? Probably not a lot. Also when considering how industrial today's watch industry is, all the companies' profits must be substantial.

    They succeed because there are always people who are willing to spend and keep sustaining this price boom, similar to real estate. Many people do not appreciate watches, they buy simply because they can afford it. Others are vain, and lastly, the masses who like them but cannot afford them because of monetary restraints. This is the case with all "luxuries", just the other day, I saw a handbag that sells for 100 grand, I mean, seriously? Nonetheless, I would probably courageously defend the preposterous prices if i were a rich guy and desperately hold onto the sense of exclusivity.

    So, there goes my rant.
    Last edited by FelixL; October 19th, 2013 at 08:16.
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  2. #2
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    Re: Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    Here goes a little breakdown, the watch manufact. like Patek, Lange , Breguet where always made for the elite and wealthy, like art a painting that a wealthy person buys for the craft that went into it.. So these brands will never die or falter... Rolls Royce per example all hand made been around for a long time meant for the elite wealthy, Patek is the equivalent when it comes to watches.

    The brands I assume that are irking you are Omega, Hublot , Breitling etc.. etc.. This you can thank Rolex & it's powerful & genius marketing technique from 1960's on.. The rest all fallowed and took advantage of what Rolex started & gave them some competition.. Now do I think it will stay like this? No 100% as a matter a fact Thierry Stern says in an interview in this months Revolution magazine that he sees the watch market going down in the near future. Especially with China's economy stabilizing and slowing down.. & believe it or not China accounts for 60-70% off Luxury watch sales.. Chinese love their luxury watches!!

    Lastly, their is an outlet for watch fanatics who love watches & certain classic designs but don't want to pay the $$$$$. Boutique brands (Steinhart, CW, DB) that do homages & still charge what Rolex used to charge for a SS Sub in the early 60's.. ;)

    Theirs my $.02
    Last edited by Watchnut12; October 19th, 2013 at 08:44.
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  3. #3
    Member geoffbot's Avatar
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    Re: Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    Plenty of relatively good value brands out there (still expensive compared to the 60s, I'm sure) - focus on them.

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  5. #4
    Member OrangeSport's Avatar
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    Re: Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    Prices seem appropriate to me, in general. People could sometimes afford more quality decades ago as there was less stuff to buy, especially electronic equioment and must-have gadgets.

  6. #5
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    Re: Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    Nope. I'm happy with the quality of watches available across most ranges.
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  7. #6
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    Re: Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    Not the only difference is the economy of scale. In the 50s and 60s most everyone wore a watch and they were mechanical, today fewer people wear a watch and the VAST majority of the ones that do don't wear a mechanical watch. Make high quality goods for a limited number of sales and the price runs up.

  8. #7
    Member NinthSphere's Avatar
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    Re: Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    Not just watch prices, I wish just about eveything was cheaper. I most definitely appreciate quality goods, but I'm not made of money.

  9. #8
    Member little big feather's Avatar
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    Re: Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    Living is not cheap....I remember when a Coke was a dime and a McDonald burger was fifteen cents.
    My first job was $1.10 an hour.....My last job $82.00 an hour.
    Any watches posted may be seen as gifts,borrowed or found property and not as personal property of Little Big Feather.

  10. #9
    Moderator Public Forum John MS's Avatar
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    Re: Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    I don't see where watch prices are inflated in real terms over what they were in the 1950's. Back tben people did not usually own "watches" as they more commonly do today. A watch was cared for and serviced and could last decades or a lifetime. And yes back then a fine not high end watch like a Hamilton cost a good amount relative to income. That was why they were more frequently given as celebratory gifts than now. Look at how many watches one can buy today. Sure you can find pricey $10k+ watches today that are beyond some budgets today. Just as one could find relatively pricey watches back then. I would argue that if anything improved manufacturing, better watch technoligy and outsourcing have made many watches relatively more affordable than they were back then. I have the sense you are focused on watches you can't afford. It's a whole lot more enjiyable to lust after and buy watches that are priced affirably. Just look or give us a range of prices and styles and you get lots of ideas.
    Last edited by John MS; October 19th, 2013 at 15:06.
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  11. #10
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    Exclamation Re: Do you wish watch prices are not so inflated

    My Tag Heuer Monaco went for around $2100 when I purchased it around 2004. Now they are asking $6000!

    that is waaaay more than the rate of inflation.

    I suspect that the Chinese market is to blame, although I have nuthin to back that up
    Shane94116 likes this.

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