Leica: Prices up today, keep calm and have a cup of tea
I didn’t need any crystal balls when I wrote about the impending UK Leica price increase on October 23. It couldn’t have been far away and it wasn’t.
Today Leica’s prices increased by between 6 and 11%, taking the M240, for instance, from £5,030 to £5,550. Most of the cameras, including film cameras, are up by just over 10% while lenses are around 6% up. Some dealers, including Red Dot Cameras, still have stock of some cameras at the old prices although the Q, which has always been in short supply, is available only at the new price.
The increases are considerably less than many expected after seeing the response of Japanese manufacturers to the fall in the pound. One reason is that most of the camera industry’s imports are from Japan (or, at least, priced in yen), and the pound has fallen more against the yen. I suppose we can take the view that Leica has been fair in its approach to the British consumer.
However, Leica prices were last increased as recently as May, so this further clouds the issue. Some of the pound's depreciation since the June vote is overreaction but much is an overdue adjustment to a currency that was widely seen as overvalued. One happy result is that UK exports are booming and this means an improving balance of payments and more jobs for British workers.
My advice to continue sitting on your cameras and lenses has turned out to be sage, although it was a pretty obvious assumption.