Slowdown No Problem for Luxury Goods
Affluent Americans still snapping up fancy watches, jewelry
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 26, 2008 2:22 PM CDT
Moshe Mallul shops for a necktie at the Hermes Paris store in New York on Friday, June 22, 2007. Hermes sales rose 10% in the Americas between April and June, despite the economic slowdown.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
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(Newser) – If America’s economy is failing, at least it’s going down in style. Sales of luxury goods have been surprisingly strong this year, despite the overarching economic gloom, the Wall Street Journal reports. Brands such as Hermès and Burberry have seen double-digit growth, as Americans continue to snap up expensive jewelry, Swiss watches, and French scarves, and fast-growing developing economies produce more wealthy buyers.  

Goods that can be justified as investments, like watches, are especially popular. Many brands have also introduced more “entry level” items, which allow affluent customers to spend less without forsaking luxury brands. Certain categories, such as designer clothing, are falling, however, and sales may yet slow in the second half of the year.