A Hermés Birkin Handbag is a Better Investment Than Gold, Study Finds

The most exclusive purse in the world is a more solid long-term investment than gold or the stock market.

According to a values research study conducted by Baghunter, an online marketplace for buying and selling high-end bags, the average annual return rate for a Hermés Birkin handbag has surpassed that of the S&P 500 as well as the value of gold for the past 35 years.

Taking inflation into account, the S&P returned an average of 8.7% a year and gold has seen an average annual return of 1.9%, or a real return average of -1.5% between 1980 and 2015. On the other hand, Birkin handbags have steadily increased year after year with an average annual increase in value of 14.2%.

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Baghunter also noted the volatility of the stock market when compared to the bag. The annual return rate of the S&P fluctuated from a high 37.2% in 1995 to a low -36.6% in 2008. A Birkin bag however, oscillated in peak surge value from 2.1% to 25% throughout the time frame.

According to Quartz, Hermés conceived of the idea for the Birkin bag in 1981 after running into actress Jane Birkin on a plane. After she suggested the company invent a bag with pockets, the Birkin was born. Long deemed as a marker of status and wealth in society, the Birkin bag can be purchased for a steep price of $60,000. The most expensive Birkin bag was reportedly bought at an auction for $223,000.

The Birkin bag is made from premium animal skins sewn together by French artisans in a time consuming process. The bags are notoriously known to be “sold out” and it is believed that Hermés intentionally creates a shortage to keep demand high.  

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It has been rumored that a wait list for a Birkin bag can take up to six years.

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