As China Turns Cautious, What Are Luxury Consumers Choosing to Buy?

on August 7 2012 | in Lifestyle Trends | by | with No Comments


There are a lot of anxiety over the Chinese luxury market. Some are warning of a major slowdown while others remain optimistic about growth.

A new study conducted in June by Ruder Finn/Ipsos reveals that the luxury goods market is still growing but with new spending patterns.

Ruder Finn/Ipsos surveyed 1,135 luxury consumers on the mainland who earned more than RMB 100,000 (approximately $15,651 – $31,302) annually. About 69 percent of the respondents were under the age of 35.

What the study found is that the desire for luxury product remains strong as Chinese consumers still want to buy luxury products to reward themselves, to convey status, and to express their taste and personality.

What has changed is what they are choosing to buy.

Luxury-brand watches which were stellar sellers are no longer as appealing. Neither are handbags or jewelry. About 54 percent of respondents saying they plan to spend less on watches over the next 12 months. About 48 percent said handbags and jewelry are no longer spending priorities for the coming year.

So what will they buy?

Respondents said they would increase spending on luxury cosmetics (43 percent), high-end shoes (43 percent), and top-brand wines, spirits and cigars (40 percent).

“In the past 12 months the luxury market was going strong but consumers are cautiously planning for the next year because of the economic news they’re reading, and this could lead to a relative slowdown. But they will not stop shopping. They will just be buying different luxury items,” says Simon Tye, Executive Director of Ipsos.

photo credit: estee lauder

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