You would not know much of the world is going through hard times by looking at the profits and statements of the makers of luxury goods.
LVMH, the world’s biggest such group, has just posted better-than-forecast sales growth for the last three months and sees no signs of a slowdown in the luxury industry.
While Burberry last week announced 30 percent sales growth with much of that in China.
Consulting firm Bain & Company has predicted that China will replace Japan this year as the second-largest luxury goods market after the US.
The chief executive of Cartier, Bernard Fornas, explained what is happening: “The luxury trade has been slightly less affected than others, simply because, imagine your business is supplying a lot of areas you know well, and where you’re performing rather well, and then suddenly you add a whole continent (Asia), which has a lot of wealth and inevitably that compensates for the weakness in other areas.”
The shares of luxury firms like LVMH have recovered since a sell-off in late September and early October.
That was sparked by fears the sector could be hit by a spending slump — so far there is no sign of that.