In 2018 the Italy 100 has been Liv-ex’s worst performing index, losing 0.85%, compared to the broad market’s gain of 4.62%.
The reasons for this slight fall are not at first obvious. To start with trade share has actually improved to a monthly average of 7.9% from to 6.4% in 2017.
Delving into the Super Tuscans, which account for half of the wines in the Italy 100 index, partly explains the fall. Sassicaia and Tignanello have made slight gains of 2.8% and 1.1% in 2018 whereas Ornellaia, Masseto and Solaia have fallen 2.7%, 3.5% and 6.4% respectively. Losses have been quite stark on an individual wine (including vintage) level for some of these. Even with low market liquidity Masseto and Solaia 2005 have both fallen just over 20% in price each since the start of the year.
Previously Liv-ex has wondered whether a divide might be opening up between the price performance of Super Tuscans and top Barolos. However, the Barolos of Giacomo Conterno – some of which were the top performing wines in 2017 – have gained 1.8% on average this year, placing the brand behind Sassicaia in terms of price performance. It seems, therefore, that in 2018 this trend is slowing down.