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Chinese tourism boom that propped up luxury brands is falter

edit:casino time:2019-03-09

Mannequins stand in a window display of a store at night in the Ginza area of Tokyo on Aug. 21, 2018. MUST CREDIT; Bloomberg photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi. Photo: Tomohiro Ohsumi, Bloomberg / © 2018 Bloomberg Finance LP

Mannequins stand in a window display of a store at night in the Ginza area of Tokyo on Aug. 21, 2018. MUST CREDIT; Bloomberg photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi.

Mannequins stand in a window display of a store at night in the Ginza area of Tokyo on Aug. 21, 2018. MUST CREDIT; Bloomberg photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi.

Photo: Tomohiro Ohsumi, Bloomberg

Photo: Tomohiro Ohsumi, Bloomberg

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Mannequins stand in a window display of a store at night in the Ginza area of Tokyo on Aug. 21, 2018. MUST CREDIT; Bloomberg photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi.

Mannequins stand in a window display of a store at night in the Ginza area of Tokyo on Aug. 21, 2018. MUST CREDIT; Bloomberg photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi.

Photo: Tomohiro Ohsumi, Bloomberg

Chinese tourism boom that propped up luxury brands is faltering

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For the better part of a decade, wealthy Chinese tourists have been on a feeding frenzy for luxury brands, casinos and cruise lines. Now there are doubts about how long the buffet will last.

From Tokyo's glitzy Ginza shopping district to Hong Kong, Macau and New York's Fifth Avenue, there are noticeable cracks in what has been the very bankable strategy of catering to throngs of newly affluent Chinese traveling the world. Explanations vary from China's slowing economy to the government's push to spur spending at home and fluctuations in currency values. Whatever the reason, the result is increasing worry across the globe.

"Luxury brands have gained a lot of traction and growth out of China, but the bloom is off the rose," said Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing Inc. in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, which researches affluent shoppers. "You can't blame them because that's where the easy money was."

Over the past few months, executives have been hounded by questions about high-end Chinese shoppers, who Bain & Co. says generated a third of global luxury sales in 2017 -- mostly outside China's border. French luxury giants L'Oréal and LVMH have tried to ease concerns, saying travel sales remain robust. Meanwhile, jeweler Tiffany & Co.; Capri Holdings Ltd., the owner of Michael Kors and Jimmy Choo; and Coach parent Tapestry Inc. said spending by Chinese tourists in cities including New York and Hong Kong has weakened.

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