Fears of another global recession appear to be doing little to dampen sales at some auctions, with buyers recently flocking to Christie's Geneva to splash out on diamonds, watches and fine wines.
New world record prices were set at the auction house’s last sale of the year, which took place between 14 November and 16 November.
Christie's Geneva Important Watches auction sold a rare 18-carat pink gold automatic perpetual calendar wristwatch by Patek Philippe for almost CHF 2.1 million (€1.7 million), well above its CHF 500,000 to CHF 1 million pre-sale estimate.
Jewellery also didn’t disappoint, with records set for a grey 10.67-carat diamond, which sold for over CHF 1.09 million, and a pair of emerald earrings that went under the hammer for almost CHF 2.83 million.
“Even in the present uncertain economic times, jewellery prices fetched new levels,” said Jean-Marc Lunel, head of Christie's Geneva Jewellery Department.
Wines too fared well, with 90% of lots offered selling, including a Romanée-Conti, vintage 2001, that fetched CHF 92,000 – it’s pre-sale estimate was CHF 50,000 to CHF 70,000.
Buyers, looking to invest in tangible assets, from China, the US, India and 50 other countries spent more than CHF 181.6 million between May and November at Christie's Geneva, an increase of 62% on 2010.