Lafite’s premium narrows further

16th June, 2014 by Rupert Millar

Lafite’s premium over its fellow first growths is narrowing as poor performing vintages start to make their way into its Liv-ex sub-index.

lafiteThe fine wine market place reported on its blog that since hitting its peak in 2011 with the release of the 2008 vintage, Lafite’s lead over the other first growths has tumbled from 129% to just 44% – a price movement noted at the end of last year.

Liv-ex pointed out that one reason for this decline was the changing of vintages used to measure the estate’s performance.

Only the 10 most recent physical vintages are used to chart progress and recently, the rather better performing 2000 vintage dropped out to make way for the 2010, which like the 2009 trades for less than Latour having plummeted in value since the en primeurs.

Older Lafite vintages are keeping the estate substantially above the other firsts at the moment, even the 2001 has a premium of 68% over its equivalents from Mouton, Margaux, Haut-Brion and Latour.

On the other hand that vintage is also soon to leave the sub-index to be replaced by the 2011 which has a premium of just 22% above the other firsts.

As these more recent, under-performing vintages increasingly find their way onto the index then the premium will continue to narrow.

But how far? Liv-ex asks whether, “at some point”, it will shrink to its level 10 years ago of just 5% and one can perhaps speculate if, at that point, one of the other firsts might be in a position to supersede it?

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