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Price fixing - Watches

The Internet is becoming more and more an excellent source of information. Unfortunately not many know how to use it or how to use it to its full potential.

Many forums have a commercial reason to be there. Most want to make money and to promote a product. The same, regrettably so, applies to watch magazines. When was the last time that you read that ANOTHER watch brand was not as good as JOHNSMITH brand?

I placed a question recently in a forum in Italy about price fixing at auctions. Replies came back to the tone “of course, where have you been”?

I knew that Swatch pumped up their prices back in the mid 70s to promote their products but I was not aware that brands like Rolex and Omega had the same followings. It seems that in the next auctions to come up next summer, a few individuals will bid against each other to increase prices on vintage Rolex watches. As these characters have a large stock of vintage Rolex watches, they will gain a lot money by using such tactics (unfair as they may appear to be).

Rolex, of course, by making scarce the supply of models like the Daytona steel and the Sea-Dweller are fuelling demands and many dealers around the world that will profit on these and other models. It is in fact the Professional series of watches that is keeping the Rolex name afloat giving it a certain importance and keeping prices high. Should we look at the other range of Rolex models we soon realize that prices can fall as much as 60% in just a few years (not such a good investment after all as we are led to believe).

My comments are not unique any more, as often similar one can be found on many forums. Knowledge and curiosity is pushing many readers to seek for the truth.

A buyer was recently shocked to finding out that Rolex had paid £100,000 to sponsor a celebrity. For this reason he refused to buy a Rolex watch. What should the public say about Tag-Heuer that have paid $ millions to Tiger Woods (and a long list of others)?

My teacher used to tell me “don’t cheat as the knots will come to the surface”. With a production of over 800,000 pieces per annum and average prices of around £3,500 a piece, Rolex watches are a good business for many and for these people it is important to keep a myth well alive. Unfortunately the myth is proving to be not so convincing any more as we cannot trust the word of a few experts that cannot come up with evidence.