Rolex & Patek Philippe watches flood second-hand market after crypto valuations fell

The new rich became less rich and first things that get sold are luxury watches.

Belmont Lay | July 31, 2022, 06:05 PM

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Rolex and Patek Philippe watches are flooding the second-hand market due to the collapse in cryptocurrencies, Bloomberg reported.

The supply of the most sought after watches, including the Rolex Daytona or Patek Nautilus 5711A, “is now much larger”, online-watch trading platform Chrono24 said in a statement.

The Germany-based Chrono24 attributed the flood of luxury watches to the recent depressed cryptocurrency valuations, which “has directly impacted pricing".

More than half a million watches are listed for sale on the Chrono24 website.

Rise and fall in tandem

Expensive watches were in demand when cryptocurrency valuations soared and minted a new class of luxury buyers -- including but not limited to crypto bros.

This led to the price increase for models, particularly from brands like Rolex, Audemars Piguet and Patek.

The reverse has happened with cryptocurrency valuations plummeting.

Chrono24 Co-CEO Tim Stracke called the pullback "a consolidation" as prices for the most sought after timepieces have fallen closer in line with similar watches.

With cheaper prices, more watches naturally exchanged hands between buyers and sellers.

Trading volumes on the platform linking dealers or private sellers with buyers have jumped more than 50 per cent in the first half 2022, Bloomberg reported.

Price floor still elevated

But the pullback in prices is nothing compared to its surge.

The price of a Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711A, which sells for about US$35,000 (S$48,320) at retail, surged to US$240,000 (S$331,334) in the first quarter, according to Chrono24.

It is now about US$190,000 (S$262,306).

The price increases have seen watches like the Girard-Perregaux Laureato, Cartier, Breitling, as well as nearly all models from the Omega Speedmaster collection go up in value.

All photos via Unsplash