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10 min ago
7.50” / 19.05 cm Wrist
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Recent posts

Synchronise your watches!

In a moment of OCD, I decided to synchronise my mechanical watches this morning. Yeah, I know! I’m going to use the excuse that I wanted to test the a...

World beater!

So I’ve just had the pleasure of getting hands on with the soon to be released Farer World Timer. For those of you unfamiliar - I’ll let TGV give you...

The one I didn’t buy, but why?

I wasn’t looking for this watch, it came looking for me. As a YouTube watch content addict, the Omega CK859 started to pop up in my feed from a number...

Recent Comments

commented on Updated SOTC 2024 ·

Highly recommend both the Speedy and the IWC portguesier chrono (I’m biased however).

commented on Quick, look, before it changes again, lol - Q1 SOTC ·

Lovely collection. What bracelets/ straps do you typically pair with them?

commented on HOT TAKE 🔥 🔥🔥 ·

I’m confused by the US definition of “made in [insert country name]”. You’ve previously stated that, in your view, it’s the gold standard, and avoids ambiguity. But then you state that the requirements would allow a watch that includes non-Swiss components to be classed as Swiss made. This then leaves the same risk that your proposed intervention seeks to resolve: namely a misinformed customer, who expects a watch, labelled “Swiss Made”, to be 100% manufactured in Switzerland, mistakenly buys a watch that is <100% Swiss made.

If what you’re actually saying is that the U.S. definition is superior because it is more restrictive than the Swiss definition, then ipso facto, a disclosure requirement that is more restrictive, would, by that logic, be more preferable still. Taken to its logical conclusion, your preference would, I assume, be to ban all watches from using the label aside from those that are, in fact, 100% Swiss made.

If this is not your position, then I’m unclear why you’ve stated a preference for an Intermediate defintion (such as the U.S. one) which differs only arbitrarily from the Swiss definition.

Taking your next challenge, you have questioned the effectiveness of a disclosure-based remedy due to its limitations when applied to pre-owned watches sold by grey-market / vintage dealers. But this limitation is identical under your proposed remedy: ie. a new definition could only apply to new watches imported to the US and not those already owned by residents of the US. So under both methods of regulation, the pre-owned market would still give rise to consumer harm.

I’m also not clear on how the new definition you have proposed would be policed. You’ve suggested that it would be driven by complaints supported by evidence. But who would these complainants be? Clearly not consumers, as we’ve already established that they don’t have the resources to establish the country of origin for components used in the manufacture of a watch (if they did, there’d be no need for the regulation). So that leave watch industry professionals. However, this then gives rise to a question of motive: what motive would one watch manufacturer have in whistleblowing on a fellow watch manufacturer? Two problems arise here:

1 - no good faith: given the commercial imperative, you would want to question whether any whistleblower was merely acting in their own self interest rather than the general interest of consumers when reporting a breach of the rules. As such, the authorities would have to determine whether the complainant was acting in good faith, or merely seeking to undermine a competitor when evaluating a complaint and the associated evidence. This complexity of determination is likely to limit both the capacity of the regulator to verify genuine complaints and inflate the cost of policing the requirements. These regulatory costs would have the effect of increasing the cost of manufacturing “genuine” Swiss made watches, resulting in a net increase to the prices paid by consumers for compliantly produced watches.

2 - prisoners dilemma: given that all agents in this whistleblowing game are aware of the potential tactics that other self-interested parties might employ, and the benefit to them of employing similar tactics, you may end up with a suboptimal outcome. The result could be a stable Nash equilibrium in which genuine breaches are systematically under reported OR false accusations are over reported, without need for any coordination amoung the participants. Trying to calibrate the pay-off matrix (eg the scale of fines and other legal repercussions) for this sort of regulatory model would be close to impossible.

All this is to say, any regulatory intervention is likely to have unintended consequences which reduce the theoretical benefits to consumers of addressing the market failure. The world of the second best then applies (ie the need to select the least worst option).

In the case of the Swiss made label - I’ve yet to hear an argument to persuade me that there is any agency better placed to regulate the industry than the Swiss authorities. They have the most to lose if the label is diluted to such sn extent that manufacturers are able to slap “Swiss Made” on watches produced entirely in factories in Tianjin. The Swiss authorities are also best placed to police the regulations relating to the origin of manufacure (both in available skillset and access to both the value chain and factories where the watches are assembled).

No foreign agency (US or otherwise) would face the same, consumer aligned, incentives. And nor would they have the skills and access to the manufacturers value chain to effectively police any alternative regulatory regime.

So despite being imperfect, the current model is likely to be the best option for consumers. The use of disclosures could reinforce incentive structures that already exist in the market, and thereby employ market forces to address market failures.

commented on Seamaster 300 Heritage vs. Black Bay 58 ·

Love the design of the Omega, but is it a bit big for a daily? BB58 has never quite hit the spot for me; I’ve wanted to like it, tried it on many times, and appreciate it is a solid watch, but maybe it’s not quite the one for me.

commented on $8,000 in your pocket - what are you buying? ·

One of these:

  • Omega speedmaster pro hesalite

  • Omega aqua terra 38mm (more versatile than 41mm)

  • Rolex Explorer 36/40mm depending on your wrist size (36mm felt a bit too small for my 7.58inch wrist)

  • IWC Mark XX

commented on I don't see how anyone can do 1 watch only. ·

Without wanting to sounds like a complete d**k, I think I can tick every box you’ve identified. The “vintage” box is missing both from your list and my watchbox - but I’m still not entirely sure if I’ll ever find a vintage that really works for me.

commented on Help me pick between the two! ·

Baby Alpinist was the winner for me. I love GADA watches, and both the styling and size of the Baby are perfect. I’ve a 7.5 inch wrist, and it looks pretty good (though I say it myself). I love the new GMT and the traditional Alpinists, but both are more obviously tool watches in my eyes. But if you really love the traditional version, it’s worth noting that a lot of Seiko moders have been removing the cyclops (Max included) and doesn’t look overly complicated to pull off.


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