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CNBC

Brexiting Britain means now might be the time to buy a yacht

Brokers say even lower-end vessels are selling for tens of thousands of dollars less

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 10 July, 2016, 11:33pm
UPDATED : Monday, 11 July, 2016, 1:16pm

In the wake of its vote to leave the European Union, Britain's political leadership is in tatters and its currency is sinking.

However, that latter part is good news for some. The immediate post-Brexit era has created a boon of sorts for people outside of the U.K.—especially tourists and luxury goods buyers.

The British pound's swoon to 31-year lows against the U.S. dollar has created bargain basement prices for luxury seafaring vessels, according to YachtWorld. The broker of new and used boats notes that a 2014 Princess 98 Fly, a 98-foot boat that can accommodate anywhere between 6 and 10 guests, listed for 7.5 million pounds (US$9.73 million) on June 23rd.

Fast forward two weeks, and Sterling's tumble effectively shaved more than US$1 million from the price for an American buyer, YachtWorld notes. It gives U.S. buyers an opportunity to pick up a yacht on the (relative) cheap.

Yet given how quickly exchange rates can change—Bank of International Settlements data shows that the pound/U.S. dollar exchange rate is one of the most liquid and highly traded in the US$5.3 trillion foreign exchange market—potential yacht buyers might want to move equally as fast.

"While both the impact of the Brexit decision and the amount of time that buyers can take advantage of the current value of the pound against the dollar is uncertain, our global marketplace offers buyers and sellers opportunities to take advantage of an opportunity such as this one," according to Katy Judge, YachtWorld's brand manager.

The potential savings on a luxury yacht could be in the hundreds of thousands or even millions, YachtWorld pointed out, and even extend to lower price boats. A used 2004 Sun Odyssey, which the site listed at 199,950 pounds (US$296,000) in June, dropped down to US$258,000 last week, YachtWorld said.

The Brexit turmoil has fractured Britain's political class, but hotels and airlines have moved quickly to take advantage, with travel deals proliferating everywhere.

That said, the pound's slide is taking a bite out of wealthy earners in other ways. A report by Bloomberg noted that after her Wimbledon win on Saturday, tennis champion Serena Williams' take home prize was cut by nearly US$400,000. Her US$2.59 million purse was valued at US$2.97 million last month, the report noted.