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Trade predicts En Primeur price drop while academic study estimates rise

Published:  26 April, 2018

There is little consensus about En Primeur prices this year with the wine trade predicting a drop while the latest academic study expects a price rise.

Liv-ex surveyed the international wine trade upon its return from tasting the new Bordeaux vintage and found that merchants expected Euro release prices to be 11.5% lower than last year on average, with the biggest price drops expected for Leoville Las Cases, Mission Haut Brion and Pichon Lalande.

This was in contrast to findings by Syracuse University Whitman School of Management that based its estimates on weather information and the Liv-ex 100.

It said that it expected a 2.02% rise for the first growths and a 1.47% increase for left bank producers.

In light of the conflicting predictions, Liv-ex director Justin Gibbs said this was going to be a “particularly” interesting En Primeur campaign to watch.

“While the trade expect prices to drop by 11.5% on average, many hope for greater reductions,” he said.

“Collectors have invested heavily in the 2015 and 2016 En Primeur campaigns. To encourage buying for the third year in a row, the price will need to be right. This means it will need to look right next to other comparable vintages in the market.”

The Liv-ex survey also revealed that Petrus had been crowned wine of the Bordeaux vintage by the global trade, appearing in 14% of respondents’ number one picks.

Vieux Chateau Certan came in second place with more than a third of respondents selecting the wine as one of their top five favourites. 

Grand Puy Lacoste topped the value for money category for the eighth consecutive year.

More than 80% of merchants said they expected less demand than the 2016 campaign. However, according to Liv-ex almost all merchants qualified this by commenting that their answer very much depended on prices.

Liv-ex has a membership of 400 of the world’s biggest buyers and sellers of fine wine.