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Showing posts from August, 2019

The Watch Safety Net

I've arrived late to the Peaky Blinders party, but arrived I have and boy is it entertaining. If you're unfamiliar with Peaky Blinders it is a BBC produced TV show centered on a crime family in Birmingham, England post- WWI but pre-WWII.

You would reasonably ask if my opening discussion of a crime drama means I've already jumped the shark in my plan to apply economics to horology on this site. But stick with me, it all connects.

In Season 3 of Peaky Blinders the Russians enter the picture by way of nobility exiled to England in the wake of the communist revolution. The plot has the Russians illicitly acquiring British war materiel in a desperate gambit to fight the communists and restore some version of the aristocracy. The scheme is managed by a character named Leon Petrovich Romanov who is questioned about his source of financing.

His response offers a vital but overlooked insight into one of the great mysteries of the Swiss watch industry: why do people pay so much…