The US personal accessories market showed lower current value growth in 2013 than in 2012, as unit prices of gold and silver jewellery declined in 2013, after rocketing in 2011. Unit prices of bags and luggage also stabilised in 2013, after rapid growth in 2011 and 2012.
At the same time, higher employment and a reduction in mortgage rates allowed those in the upper-income brackets to treat themselves to a new handbag or watch.
Confidence grew amongst affluent consumers in 2013, as housing prices rose, leading their single largest investment to increase in value.
According to a recent market report, 'Personal Accessories in the US,' the rise of new technology is having a major impact on personal accessories.
In the academic arena, the adoption by many schools of tablets such as iPads instead of textbooks is leading to reduced demand for pens, as students can now take notes on a tablet instead of having to use a pen and notebook.
On the positive side, the popularity of smartphones, laptops and tablets was a boon for sales of bags, as Americans looked to bags to protect their expensive electronics.
The competitive environment in personal accessories is becoming more concentrated, as manufacturers and retailers engage in more mergers and acquisitions.
Sterling Jewelers, the largest seller of jewellery in the US, became even bigger when it acquired the Ultra Stores jewellery specialist chain in October 2012.
Swatch Group gained entry into the luxury diamond jewellery segment when it completed its acquisition of Harry Winston in March 2013.
Over the next five years, the US personal accessories market is expected to maintain a positive performance, as the US economy is expected to continue improving.
In turn, higher employment rates and higher disposable incomes will allow Americans to spend on discretionary items such as jewellery, luggage and travel.
For more information on the US personal accessories market, see the latest research: US Personal Accessories Market
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