Week In Review: January 30-February 3

    In case you missed them the first time around, here are some of Jing Daily’s top posts for the week of January 30-February 3.
    Jing DailyAuthor
      Published   in Fashion

    Jing Daily’s Top Posts for the Week

    In case you missed them the first time around, here are some of Jing Daily’s top posts for the week of January 30-February 3:

    Jing Daily

    Economic Slowdown May Fuel Maturation Of China’s Luxury Market

    Following several years of exponential growth, some observers of the China luxury market expect a gradual slowdown in the country’s booming economy to make Chinese consumers take a breath before making big-ticket purchases in 2012. While few expect to see a significant drop in actual business in 2012, the expectation is that many of the key trends that Jing Daily identified in 2011 in the market will lead to a change in the growth rate.

    This week, Hans Helmuth Hennig (previously on Jing Daily), Managing Director at the Hong Kong-based luxury distributor Jebsen & Co., spoke to CNBC about a potential slowdown in the luxury sector in 2012. Though Hennig starts off by admitting, “I think what we’re seeing is a slowing of growth, not really a slowing of the overall business,” he adds that Jebsen expects growth rates for certain luxury segments — particularly flashy luxury cars, which Jing Daily has identified as one of the first victims of a change in conspicuous consumption patterns — to lessen more than others.

    Jing Daily

    Christie’s, BNY Mellon To Take Asia’s Largest Warhol Exhibition To China In 2013

    Restricted to operating in Hong Kong, major international auction houses like Sotheby’s and Christie’s have spent the last several years looking at new ways of increasing their non-auction presence in mainland China. Faced with stronger competition from domestic Chinese auction houses Beijing Poly and China Guardian, Christie’s in particular has sought to get involved in the Mainland market in any way possible and, in the nearly three years following the Pierre Berget auction controversy, mend fences with Beijing. In November 2010, Christie’s collaborated with an affiliate of China’s Ministry of Culture on the “Trans-Realism” exhibition in New York, a show featuring 29 works hand-picked by a Chinese government-appointed panel. As Andrew Foster, an international managing director at Christie’s, said at the time, “We want to improve our relations with China, with the Chinese people and government, and Chinese museums and artists.”

    While gestures like the Trans-Realism show failed to push the Chinese government any closer to allowing international auction houses to enter the Mainland, these auction houses apparently still see value in bankrolling traveling exhibitions and art education programs in China.

    Jing Daily

    Chinese Tourists Returning To Japan In Record Numbers

    Nearly one year after avoiding the country in the wake of the devastating tsunami and Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident, Chinese tourists have returned to Japan in record numbers. Coming just in time to buoy Japanese retailers, many of whom have been stung by a drop in tourist arrivals in 2011, Chinese travelers flocked to Japan over the course of the Lunar New Year holiday, bringing much-needed cash to Tokyo luxury boutiques, ski slopes in Hokkaido and Kyoto tourist traps. According to Japanese tourism authorities, the return of Chinese tourists has been as dramatic as it has been a relief, with a record 80,000 arriving in December alone, a 32 percent increase year-over-year. Authorities expect another double-digit increase in January as well.

    As the Wall Street Journal points out this week, the growing importance of big-spending Chinese tourists to Japan’s tourism industry has been made starkly apparent over the past year, and in many ways reflects Japan’s economic reliance on its larger neighbor.

    Jing Daily

    Asian Buyers Snub Bordeaux, But Auction Houses Insist “They’ll Be Back”

    This past weekend, the cooling demand for top Bordeaux vintages among Asia’s emerging wine collectors was starkly apparent at a US$2.5 million auction at Sotheby’s in London. Though the sale was 95 percent sold by lot, with Sotheby’s holding that the auction “breathes fire into the wine market” during the first week of the Chinese Year of the Dragon, Bloomberg writes today that dealers say the total was close to auction forecasts, with the selling rate benefiting from lower pre-sale estimates. Less enthusiastic bidding from Asian collectors indicates that this increasingly important buyer class is taking a breather — at least at far-flung auctions heavy on Bordeaux. This is having knock-down effects on prices for prestige bottles, with prices dropping 20 percent from the market highs achieved in the middle of last year. However, according to Miles Davis, partner at Wine Asset Managers LLP, this is to be expected. Said Davis, “The wine market remains volatile, though it’s leveling out…It’s following the classic pattern of a 20 percent decline after a global shakeup.”

    Jing Daily

    ART HK 2012 Lineup Places It Far Ahead Of Regional Competitors

    Five years after its establishment — which, at that time, was met with skepticism in the global art world — this year’s Hong Kong Art Fair (ART HK) looks to be the best yet, placing it far ahead of regional competitors in South Korea and Singapore. With Asian collectors becoming an increasingly critical pillar in the international art market, and Hong Kong becoming one of the world’s key auction hubs since 2008, ART HK has managed to attract a steadily growing number of established galleries and exhibitors, several of which have opened, or soon plan to open, dedicated spaces in Hong Kong.

    Running this year from May 16-20, ART HK 2012 will be the biggest yet, edging out last year’s event with 264 galleries from 37 countries taking part.


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