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Luxury goods will likely maintain rich returns

Given the recent and current global economic woes and a year of unusually extreme natural disasters, some would assume that luxury goods makers would be watching their products gather dust on shop shelves, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said in a report published Nov. 14, 2011, titled "Can Luxury Goods Continue To Deliver Rich Returns In An Era Of Austerity?."

November 16, 2011 1:02 by

“In reality, sales of luxury goods are holding steady in developed countries because most affluent shoppers have retained their buying power,” said Standard & Poor’s credit analyst Nicolas Baudouin. “More importantly, luxury goods are selling very well in developing countries, such as Russia and China, as well as in Middle Eastern Gulf states.”

Whereas the consumer goods sector in general is coping with the fragile recovery–facing the specter of a second recession in Western Europe–sales of designer handbags, premium quality cars, and other luxury goods continue to climb.

“Growth rates in the luxury industry should decelerate somewhat in 2012 from the 2010 and 2011 record figures,” Baudouin added. “But we expect them to remain healthy on the back of strong momentum in emerging markets.”

We believe that credit quality in the luxury goods industry will continue to outperform the broader consumer goods sector in the coming years.

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