This morning, Britt messaged me in a state of bewilderment: Net-a-Porter was shilling a $385 crocodile Nancy Gonzalez iPhone case!
I was a little less shocked. Mostly because I'd just seen the results of February's MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse, a monthly report that tracks consumer spending in all sorts of realms, from airline tickets to restaurants to electronics.
Last month, luxury goods--not including jewelry--saw a 15% increase in US sales (when compared with February 2009). In January, the increase was 8.1%.
Does this mean we're back to pre-recession levels of spending? Of course not. But it does mean that luxury goods makers will have to rely less on emerging markets to keep profits high. With mature markets like the US and Europe bouncing back, sales from places like Korea and Brazil are just cake icing.