The coronavirus pandemic may be considered a thing of the past, but its effects continue to affect most aspects of our lives.
In one specific area, in fact, the landscape seems to have changed radically, with an impact on perhaps the most important fact of modern social reality: marriage.
According to the New York Times, Signet Jewellers, the world's largest jewellery retailer, believes that Covid-19 has affected dating so much that this year's engagement ring sales are showing a sharp decline. Assessing that the situation will not change immediately, the company revised its sales and profit forecasts for the rest of 2023.
"As we predicted, there were fewer engagements and weddings this quarter, due to the interruption of dating due to Covid three years ago," the CEO said, reports the Times.
There's now proof of the loneliness epidemic and how COVID devastated dating—a drop in Signet engagement ring saleshttps://t.co/2QoCyH8jlA— AdvisersMedia (@AdvisersMedia) June 8, 2023
While the lack of dating in recent years may have contributed to fewer people buying diamond rings, many other factors are also affecting the market: consumers are buying less due to inflation and feeling uncertain about the direction of the economy. The above may affect spending habits around the world, but the restrictions become particularly acute for expensive items such as luxury jewellery.
However, in general, the wedding industry as a whole is going through a pretty tough time as ceremonies, parties and even honeymoons have been cancelled due to the pandemic. Many wedding-related activities have made a strong comeback in 2022, and the current slowdown could be a correction to this boom.
Although jewellery sellers are under pressure, not everyone is in dire straits. Luxury jewellers do not seem to be burdened by the negative climate, thanks to the propensity of the wealthy to continue to spend huge sums of money. The New York Times notes that companies like Tiffany & Co. show continued growth in early 2023, including strong sales even in the jewellery sector.
"Everybody expected 2023 to be a terrible year for luxury in the U.S.," the CFO of LVMH, which owns Tiffany & Co., said in April. "The market is normalizing, but it's not bad," he added.
Signet Jewelers cuts outlook on drop in demand for engagement rings https://t.co/IJnFTixTtf— Financial Times (@FT) June 8, 2023
Signet hopes that in the coming years, engagement ring retail sales will recover, but this will happen from 2024 to 2026. After all, what was postponed due to the peak of the pandemic is not cancelled forever.