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Swiss watch industry in shock

It exports more than 90% of its timepieces, making the scrapping of the franc to euro currency cap by the country's central bank last week seem like a 'tsunami'.

ONLY TIME WILL TELL: Even though the mood was less ebullient at the watch show in Geneva this year than in past years, executives insisted it was too early to calculate the impact of a stronger franc on earnings.

AT Geneva's annual luxury watch fair this week, Vincent Malissen was delighting in the intricacies of a gleaming timepiece from Vacheron Constantin, one of Switzerland's most prestigious watchmakers. The price starts at 288,000 euros (S$438,000).

But when it came to confirming whether