When stock prices rise, so do yacht sales. At least, they used to.
Since World War II, there has been a fairly reliable correlation between the stock market and yacht sales. When share prices rise, the wealthy get wealthier and buy more—and bigger—yachts.
This post-recession era, however, is different. Stocks have not only recovered but also reached new highs, yet yacht sales and prices are still under water.
"Stocks are up and the wealth is up, but yachts are not following stocks right now like they usually do," said John Dane III, CEO and president of Trinity Yachts.
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Deliveries of superyachts—those more than 30 meters, or around 98 feet—fell to 169 in 2012. This was down from the boom-time level of 261 seen in 2008, according to the (super)Yachting Index from Superyacht Times and Camper & Nicholsons.
Overall, prices are down about 20 percent since 2008, and the number of superyachts being built has also fallen.