If you wanted to buy a Rolex up until around 2018 - and you didn't decide on the most coveted models like a "Daytona" - you could go to the jeweler, place an order and pick up the watch a few weeks or months later. Sometimes, as particularly small jewelers reported to the star, the watches even stood in the shop window for days – ready to be picked up!
All of this has been over since the beginning of the pandemic at the latest. The prices for all models from Rolex and many watches from the noble manufacturer Patek Philippe rose and rose - because the watches had degenerated into an object of speculation and the manufacturers could no longer meet the demand.
If you are currently asking a jeweler about a Rolex, you will continue to be smiled at, especially with models such as the "Daytona", the "GMT-Master II", the "Submariner" but also classics such as the "Datejust". "That's not our intention, and it's not fun either," justified a jeweler to the star. But: It is reality - all over the world, and completely independent of the motivation that moves customers to buy. Anniversary? Birth of a child? Hire back. The concessionaires – if they still do it – state the waiting times in years.
Now there is apparently some movement in the market, albeit cautiously at first. "Bloomberg" claims to have observed that the price of some watches is falling in parallel with the price of the cryptocurrency Bitcoin. And indeed: according to "Chrono24", a Rolex Cosmograph Daytona 116500ln cost an average of 51,000 euros in March 2022, but prices have now fallen by an average of 10,000 euros. Individual offers from new watches from German dealers are even as high as 34,990 euros for the black dial, while the white version costs at least 36,950 euros. As a reminder: If you got the watch directly from a jeweler, the price would currently be 13,550 euros.
The periods of bitcoin prices roughly match. In March, the price of the virtual currency was over 43,000 euros, today it is 23,000. The coins reached their current peak in November 2021, the price was briefly 67,267 euros. It is currently 65 percent less.
However, the cost of a bitcoin is probably not the only reason for the falling prices at Rolex, Patek and Audemars: Now that the bull market on the stock exchanges has subsided, prices for everyday needs are skyrocketing and there is an explosion in the coming years When energy costs are looming, speculators' money is apparently no longer loose enough.
In addition, the Russian market is all but cut off from the international watch trade and lockdowns in China may also have caused demand to fall. Russia and China have been among the most important markets for luxury goods for years.
But if you are now planning a visit to a jeweler to finally buy the coveted watch, you should lower your expectations. Even if the maximum prices are slowly cooling down, so the mood to buy is clearly falling when there are usury prices, the jewelers' waiting lists should continue to be extremely well filled. Because the currently declining demand on the used market is not yet related to the availability at the concessionaire - the prices are still too far apart for that.
Only when – as was still quite common in 2015 – Rolex watches can again be bought on the gray market at a discount of a few hundred, if not thousands, can we really speak of a relaxation in availability. However, it is doubtful whether this situation will ever return - at least as long as the hype surrounding the brands Rolex, Patek, Audemars and even Richard Mille is so great that every third influencer or rapper holds such watches in the camera and arouses desire.