Hype and high prices

Post Reply
User avatar
koimaster
Founder
Posts: 44045
Joined: December 16th 2009, 11:00pm
Location: Oregon, Thanks for visiting! Now go back home!
Contact:

Hype and high prices

Post by koimaster » June 15th 2021, 9:08pm

Editor’s note: Recently I spoke to a former salesman at a high-end Australian watch retailer. He told me that his store didn’t have a “passive waiting list” where you’re rewarded for patiently queuing up. In fact, to disoblige customers of that notion, the shop preferred a more pointedly ambiguous term: “the expression of interest list”. Walk into the store with the hope of buying, say, a new Daytona, and you’d obviously have zero luck. After rolling their eyes at your naivety, the sales person would explain the beserk popularity of that model and put you on their expression of interest list. But it’s here that things started to get murky.

Behind the scenes, this retailer’s tacit protocol was only to sell that watch to customers who spent $100,000 on Rolex’s non-Professional range in a 12-month period. (The Professional range, of course, includes many of the brand’s most sought-after models – the Daytona, Submariner, GMT, Yacht-Master, Explorer, Milgauss and Air-King.) Suffice to say, this would prove an impossible barrier to all but the most wealthy.

It must be stressed that this was not Rolex’s policy and just how this specific retailer behaved. And perhaps you can’t blame the shop for trying to maximise their returns when attempting to manage limited supply of a wildly coveted product. Business is business, after all. Still, hearing that tale reminded me of this story by Sandra Lane that she wrote almost two years ago. Reading it back, it feels grimly prescient of the shape of things to come.

I no longer have any desire to own or wear a Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711. Not because I like the watch any less than I ever did (it’s a great design, produced by one of the best makers in the business) but because I don’t want to be associated with what it has come to represent.

Not “represent” in the sense of its significance (along that of Royal Oak) in the history of modern watchmaking but because it’s the apotheosis of the money-chasing mania (and its flip-side, the status-symbol-chasing mania) that has gripped certain parts of the watch world in the past couple of years. A mania that is ruining things for genuine watch enthusiasts and collectors.

I’m talking here about current catalogue models – coming to the secondary market brand new or “very recently” pre-owned, aka flipped. (The vintage market has its own, different story of price/value escalation).

https://timeandtidewatches.com/hype-and ... ollectors/
Image

1946-2006

“Your heart was warm and happy

With the lilt of Irish laughter

Every day and in every way

Now forever and ever after."
boscoe
ASSHAT
Posts: 9924
Joined: March 31st 2010, 10:00pm
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by boscoe » June 16th 2021, 1:29pm

This is exactly why I detested Rolex and certain people who own them.
I love the brand's undeniable history and innovation, but most of the time I feel like a pretentious fop when I wear mine. This is a shame because they are rugged/handsome watches that also scream MUG ME and who doesn't enjoy a good fight now and again!
Not sure what to do anymore.
Buying other brands seems silly because they don't hold value. Been down that road as most of us have. But also buying a Rolex for investment is a make-me-puke moment and has driven up prices to the point of absurdity.
Perhaps it was ever thus. But seems worse now.
Last edited by boscoe on June 17th 2021, 7:37am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
gerdson
Master of Time
Posts: 2812
Joined: January 7th 2013, 11:00pm
Facebook ID: 0
Location: Just north of Northern Krautland
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by gerdson » June 16th 2021, 2:38pm

I'd rather chisel a hole into my knee cap and pour hot milk into it, than to buy a Rolex at the moment. Good watch, horrible market situation, and thus totally overpriced. Of course this does by now apply to large parts of the vintage watch market, not in the least due to hodinkee&co. I'll wait for this to implode in the face of "investors", and if not - so what.
Ardnut since 1989

In twenty years or so, the German language will be one, massively long compound word.
-- conjurer
User avatar
bedlam
WIS Divemaster
Posts: 9307
Joined: November 12th 2011, 11:00pm
Facebook ID: 0
Location: Fremantle, Australia (GMT +8)
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by bedlam » June 16th 2021, 10:46pm

boscoe wrote:
June 16th 2021, 1:29pm
Buying other brands seems silly because they don't hold value.
Interestingly, I have made a profit on every Halios I have owned :Beerbang:
Meritocracy: the privilege, wealth and advancement of those who chose their parents wisely.
Capitalism: a cult that promised to do good for the worst reasons.
Nationalism: a profound longing to go back to a past that never existed.
User avatar
gerdson
Master of Time
Posts: 2812
Joined: January 7th 2013, 11:00pm
Facebook ID: 0
Location: Just north of Northern Krautland
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by gerdson » June 17th 2021, 3:15am

So did I on vintage Enicar and Nivada. But - not to the same scale (triple value within 5-8 years?), and I do also believe the hype on parts of the vintage market is slackening. That, by the way, is also the reason why I do believe investing further into Rolex would not be a wise idea. But to each his own...
Ardnut since 1989

In twenty years or so, the German language will be one, massively long compound word.
-- conjurer
boscoe
ASSHAT
Posts: 9924
Joined: March 31st 2010, 10:00pm
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by boscoe » June 17th 2021, 7:40am

As the ancient adage advises:

Never buy a watch as an investment.

We watch fans know this - it's about what you like, not money. Still I wish my modern Tudors held value and I can't unload my SWIs and Jacques Lemans (just kidding on that - but making point).
User avatar
smellody (Online)
Founding Member & Master of Time
Posts: 7707
Joined: December 18th 2009, 11:00pm
Facebook ID: 0
Location: OR
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by smellody » June 17th 2021, 8:26am

boscoe wrote:
June 17th 2021, 7:40am
As the ancient adage advises:

Never buy a watch as an investment.

We watch fans know this - it's about what you like, not money. Still I wish my modern Tudors held value and I can't unload my SWIs and Jacques Lemans (just kidding on that - but making point).
I have not purchased watches as an investment, but try to buy right. I've only lost money on two. 1) invicta quartz Akula. Lost $80. 2) Some invicta monstrosity with a dome crystal and sloppy time knobs everywhere. Lost $25.

As for Rolex..... I've made $10ks of thousands. Especially with vintage. I've never "sold" a Rolex or Tudor but traded towards rarer models and precious metals. If the bottom drops out, I don't care. I could never part with what I have. Hopefully they are still in vogue when I die and the girls can buy a beach house in Maui.
   Image
iwasbanned (Online)
Master of Time
Posts: 6275
Joined: July 13th 2010, 10:00pm
Facebook ID: 0
Location: Austin, Texas
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by iwasbanned » June 17th 2021, 8:37am

I have never bought a watch as an investment. I buy them cause I like them. I have been very luck though. I bought several watches that have increased in value significantly.

AP and Rolex I have been very lucky to buy at retail or lower and several of these watches asking prices are twice what I paid.

Hell even my Grand Seiko Peacock, I have seen it sell for >10K nowadays.

Always made money on Halios.

Now, everything else I've ever owned, I lost or came close to break even. Panerai the worst, I've lost money on everyone of those watches. Same with Blancpain. Those are probably the watches I've taken the biggest hits on.
User avatar
smellody (Online)
Founding Member & Master of Time
Posts: 7707
Joined: December 18th 2009, 11:00pm
Facebook ID: 0
Location: OR
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by smellody » June 17th 2021, 8:56am

iwasbanned wrote:
June 17th 2021, 8:37am
I have never bought a watch as an investment. I buy them cause I like them. I have been very luck though. I bought several watches that have increased in value significantly.

AP and Rolex I have been very lucky to buy at retail or lower and several of these watches asking prices are twice what I paid.

Hell even my Grand Seiko Peacock, I have seen it sell for >10K nowadays.

Always made money on Halios.

Now, everything else I've ever owned, I lost or came close to break even. Panerai the worst, I've lost money on everyone of those watches. Same with Blancpain. Those are probably the watches I've taken the biggest hits on.
I think it is all about how you buy. . . I've had Panerai and find them too big and move them on and always make $. But then, I only buy them from my guy locally at great prices.

You have and have had some amazing watches over the years.
   Image
iwasbanned (Online)
Master of Time
Posts: 6275
Joined: July 13th 2010, 10:00pm
Facebook ID: 0
Location: Austin, Texas
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by iwasbanned » June 17th 2021, 9:25am

smellody wrote:
June 17th 2021, 8:56am

I think it is all about how you buy. . . I've had Panerai and find them too big and move them on and always make $. But then, I only buy them from my guy locally at great prices.

You have and have had some amazing watches over the years.
Don't disagree at all, I've just been unlucky and bought high on some pieces. I have no connections as I am mostly a Gray Market or used guy. I can never bring myself to pay a premium of an AD unless its a really hard to get piece.
User avatar
TemerityB
ASSHAT
Posts: 17802
Joined: June 12th 2010, 10:00pm
Facebook ID: 0
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by TemerityB » June 17th 2021, 8:29pm

iwasbanned wrote:
June 15th 2021, 9:27pm
The Daytona is my least favorite Rolex... Well maybe it's the milgauss. Unless it's this one. I wouldn't wait 10 years.

Image

But it if awesome that I bought this one for $6k and it now sells for close to $15k.

Image
Yeah, I'm seeing this one doing the same thing since the color was discontinued just before last year's new models came out:

Image

I picked it up new from an AD just about two months before last year's new editions came out, and the world went bonkers.

I will not and would never pick up a watch even one dollar over list price, and all this breathless, desperate scrambling for new models and people paying up to four times list price is beyond insane.

I enjoyed buying this watch, and enjoy owning it - but if it was today, I'd head in a different direction. Yeah, I'm obviously a Rolex fan, I own two - but this whole mania thing will keep me away for a long time to come, at least with new models. Crazy; batshit crazy. It was today I'd pick up an Omega and not look back.
The Best Invicta Ever is: The ones you used to own. - Boscoe
User avatar
gerdson
Master of Time
Posts: 2812
Joined: January 7th 2013, 11:00pm
Facebook ID: 0
Location: Just north of Northern Krautland
Contact:

Re: Hype and high prices

Post by gerdson » June 17th 2021, 9:46pm

That. Is a very nice Rolex. A few years ago, a guy showed a vintage one over in the Swiss forum, with a similar totally stunning green dial. Took my breath.
Ardnut since 1989

In twenty years or so, the German language will be one, massively long compound word.
-- conjurer
Post Reply

Return to “General Watch talk”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest