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Scotch Whisky Sales Drop As China Frowns On Lavish Spending

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Global sales of Scotch whisky suffered one of their worst falls in recent decades, slumping by 11% for the first half of the year and wiping £220m off overall sales.

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) blamed new anti-extravagance drives in China, the stronger pound and an economic slowdown in some markets for the decline in Asia and the Americas, two of the industry’s fastest-growing regions.

The association said exports of blended and malt whisky fell from £1.99bn in the first six months of 2013 to £1.77bn for the same period this year – the largest half-yearly decline in 25 years.

The figures present a significant headache for the SWA’s recently appointed chief executive, David Frost, who said the drop proved that the UK government had to continue bringing down trade barriers and restrictions.

The SWA is expected to ramp up pressure for a 2% cut in excise duty. Frost also said it would start consulting its members, dominated by global drinks giants such as Diageo, Pernod Ricard and Suntory/Jim Beam, over the tax and regulatory reforms that could follow greater devolution for Scotland.

“The latest figures also act as a reminder that the success of Scotch whisky can’t be taken for granted. We need support from government to beat down trade barriers and help us access new markets overseas,” Frost said.

So it's all the fault of the English then....

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There was no shortage of frocks and handbags in Milan last week as representatives of the $1.5 trillion global fashion industry gathered for the spring 2015 trade shows.

Behind the glamour and gloss, however, there was discernible anxiety that the mighty Chinese consumer, responsible for one third of luxury goods and fashion sales, is not living up to expectation as a consumer of fashion and bling – and could even be developing a resistance to ostentatious western brands.

Leading luxury conglomerates, including LVMH (Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton) and Kering, owner of Gucci, as well as brands like Prada – which sent models down the catwalk wearing its spring/summer 2015 collection in Milan on Thursday – are reporting disappointing financial results, and have pointed their collective finger at China, where growth in the luxury goods market has slowed to 2% after rising 30% in 2011.

Analysts warn that after years of chasing Chinese consumers, domestically and as voracious luxury shoppers in foreign capitals, the big brands may be no closer to understanding the market. With analysts warning that shares in luxury brands could fall as prominent investors dump stock, the fashion industry is seeking answers to the riddle of China's luxury consumer.

"China was everyone's dream but it's proved a lot more difficult than anyone expected," says HSBC analyst Erwan Rambourg and author of The Bling Dynasty: Why the Reign of Chinese Luxury Shoppers Has Only Just Begun.

But then again....

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Off a different forum, overseas, where they want HPC from insane prices.... and not like the VI on here.. claiming house prices not in bubble, and fair value, rubbing their hands about a new HPI cycle and 14 more years of HPI. :rolleyes:

good luck everybody
September 21, 2014 at 10:03 am

Check this article out from FT

China takes anti-corruption drive overseas

Basically Xi Jinping and the CCCP ain’t messing around.


Mon Sep 22, 2014

(Reuters) - Asian shares skidded on Monday as investors awaited data this week that could provide more evidence of a slowdown in China, while the dollar gave back a little of its recent gains.

China's flash manufacturing PMI reading on Tuesday could come in below the 50 level, indicating that manufacturing activity is contracting.

"The psychological effect of a below-50 reading will be significant and consistent with the slew of softer Chinese data over recent weeks." Mitul Kotecha, head of FX strategy Asia-Pacific for Barclays in Singapore, said in a note to clients.

in full: http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/09/22/uk-markets-global-idUKKBN0HH00S20140922

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