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Exports helped by watches but not by franc

Exports rose by a real 8.6 per cent in August compared with the same month last year, but at SFr14.433 billion ($14.37 billion) they were down considerably from July.

The Federal Customs Administration said total exports had fallen by more than SFr2 billion from July but were helped by positive developments in the watch sector.

The value of exports from the Swiss watchmaking industry rose by almost a quarter from August last year to SFr1.07 billion in what was described by the sector as a “very good month”.

A statement from the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry in Biel commented on Tuesday that with two-thirds of the year now gone, the branch was 20.1 per cent higher and had grown at a sustained pace since January.

Gold watches set the tone in August with a gain of almost 40 per cent in value.

The Federal Customs Administration said that overall Switzerland was running a merchandise trade surplus of SFr568 million, with imports totaling SFr13.865 billion.

“It seems that the strong franc is having an impact,” commented Zurich Cantonal Bank analyst David Marmet. “The export dynamics have certainly slowed and imports are rising due to cheaper import products.”

swissinfo and agencies

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