The last few days of May marked the end of the full lockdown here in Britain (the beaches looked more South of France than Southend) and the beginning of the 2019 En Primeur campaign in Bordeaux. On Wednesday Latour returned to the market with its first new release since the 2011 vintage – the 2012 was offered 22% down on that release. On Thursday came Pontet Canet 2019 – released 30% below 2018 and at Fair Value relative to back vintages. Both releases are widely considered to have been a success.
The excitement however was not enough to lift Bordeaux’s overall market share which remained well below 50% for the month – 43.8%.
Despite the growing interest in the EP campaign (or perhaps because of it!) fine wine prices drifted over the month. The Fine Wine 100 fell 0.74% to 296.25 in May, despite weakness in Sterling, which softened 1.9% against the Dollar and 3.3% against the Euro.
Trade value and volume were steady while market breadth exceeded the records set in April, as the number of active markets continued to expand.
June will see the 2019 En Primeur taps turned fully on. Union des Grand Crus tastings are expected to take place throughout this week (in Bordeaux) with critic scores and chateau announcements to follow. Release prices will be closely watched (our analysis published as normal) and their effect on the physical market monitored; in eight out of the past ten years, the month following an En Primuer campaign has proved to be a positive one for the Liv-ex 100.