Fine wine prices reach all-time high

Fine wine prices hit a new high in March, surpassing a previous peak set in June 2008.

The Liv-ex 100 Fine Wine Index, which tracks the price of 100 of the most sought-after labels, reached a level of 265 at the end of last month, breaking a record of 264 set almost two years ago, just before the onset of the worst phase of the global credit crisis. 

Asian demand for top Bordeaux, particularly from Hong Kong and China, has caused prices to soar in the last twelve months. 

“This new high completes a remarkable turnaround for the fine wine sector, which was hit hard by the global credit crisis. Prices fell by as much as 25% immediately after the collapse of Lehmann Brothers. In the last eighteen months they have regained all of this lost ground,” said James Miles, a director of Liv-ex. 

“Much of this recovery is due to strong demand from Asian markets, particularly Hong Kong and China. Although the market continues to be led by Lafite Rothschild, we have recently seen demand broaden out to a number of its Bordeaux peers, as well as to top Burgundy and Champagne,” he added.

The index has increased by more than 27% in the past year and 12% in the year to date. In the past five years the index has increased 165%, a better performance than all of the major share indices (see table below).
Patrick Schmitt, 01.04.10

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