Liv-ex April Market Report Released
Increased market activity in March
Fine wine enjoyed an uptick in activity in March, with trade value up 21.5% on the previous month and the number of wines trading up 19.6%. Prices rose more than in February, with the Liv-ex 100 index up 0.7% and the Liv-ex 1000 up 2.0%.
The best-performing wines within the Liv-ex 100 were a mix from the Rhône, Champagne, California and Barolo. The Liv-ex 1000’s gains were led by the Burgundy 150 (4.0%) and the Champagne 50 (2.6%) sub-indices.
In March, Bordeaux improved its share of trade to 36.2% of the market by value. The increase was driven by its 2019 and 2018 vintages. Meanwhile, Burgundy dipped from 26.3% of the market in February to 24.9%, and Champagne from 12.8% to 11.2%.
Nonetheless, wines from Champagne topped March’s most traded. Louis Roederer Cristal 2014 was the most traded wine by value, and Billecart-Salmon Brut Rosé by volume.
Australia (1.1%) and Chile (0.9%) led trade among the ‘others’ category (5.0%). Chilean fine wine was in the spotlight after library stock of Seña 2009 was offered through La Place de Bordeaux.
Other notable releases in March included the 2019 vintage from Château d’Yquem, Château Latour 2014 and Ao Yun 2018.
Risers from the Rhône and Burgundy
Although the Rhône 100 index was the fourth-best performing Liv-ex 1000 sub-index in March, a wine from the northern Rhône appellation of Hermitage was one of the top price performers in the Liv-ex 100 index last month – Domaine Jean Louis Chave 2017 was up 15.6%. Another wine from Hermitage Paul Jaboulet Aîné La Chapelle 2018 managed a 7.4% rise. Gains also extended to the southern Rhône’s Châteauneuf-du-Pape as Clos des Papes 2019 went up 3.9%.
The top-performing wines from Burgundy last month were Trapet Père et Fils Chambertin Grand Cru 2018 (7.3%) and Domaine Faiveley Clos des Cortons Faiveley Grand Cru 2019 (6.6%).
Market sentiment towards Burgundy in the past year
Burgundy is, overall, the most expensive and best-performing fine wine region on the secondary market. As a result, it rarely misses the investment spotlight. Yet market sentiment towards the region is somewhat seasonal. In recent years, Burgundy has recorded stronger performances over the winter months (before and during Burgundy En Primeur), with signs of retreat over spring and early summer (during Bordeaux En Primeur).
Burgundy’s exposure – the total value of bids and offers – hit an all-time high of £24 million in January this year, during the region’s 2020 En Primeur campaign. Even though Burgundy trade has slightly waned as the Bordeaux En Primeur campaign draws closer, overall sentiment remains supremely confident.
Jancis Robinson finds greater success in 2012 Left Bank Bordeaux 10 years on
Jancis Robinson MW recently reviewed the Bordeaux 2012 vintage 10 years on. Robinson tasted the wines at two events, blind and non-blind. This resulted in some slight variation in scores, as seen in the table below where two ratings are given. Latour and Lafite Rothschild scored 18 points when tasted blind, but Petrus and Mouton Rothschild got higher marks at the non-blind tasting.
Robinson noted that while 2012 was initially considered a Right Bank vintage, due to Robert Parker’s original commentary, Robinson said that the ‘conclusion in 2022 was that the Left Bank probably produced more wines that could be deemed a success’.
Robinson was also ‘struck by the lack of correlation between price and quality’.
Her top-scoring wines, along with their current Market Prices, can be seen in the table below. Canon and La Mission Haut-Brion stand out with the only unquestioned 18-point scores. Robinson said of Canon that it was ‘a really complex wine (and there aren’t many 2012s you could think of)’. The wine has risen 69.5% in value since release. Meanwhile, she described the 2012 La Mission Haut-Brion, which is up 16.1% since release, as ‘long and really rather glorious’.
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