By  on January 23, 2017
The Panthère de Cartier watch.

GENEVA — Down but not out summed up the mood at this year’s Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie here, the annual January jamboree for some of the world’s leading watch brands.

Reeling from a sky-high Swiss franc, skittish demand and a collapse of sales to Hong Kong, the industry’s single-biggest market, sentiment in recent months has been grim. Exports of Swiss watches and components — the only aggregate industry figures available — fell by 10.4 percent to 17.7 billion Swiss francs, or $17.67 billion, in the year to end November — the most recent data available. Overseas sales have dropped for 22 months straight. In Hong Kong, the main outlet for mainland Chinese demand, sales fell by almost 26 percent year-on-year in the first 11 months of 2016.

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