Welcome to the David Victor Vector Blog

Welcome to the David Victor Vector blog. This is blog that covers religious observances around the world international affairs and global business. This blog describes religious holidays for most major religions as well as raising issues dealing with globalization, international business ethics, cross-cultural business communication and political events affecting business in an integrated world economy. I look forward your discussion and commentary on these articles and subjects. Enjoy!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Year of the Red Fire Monkey: Business Impact

Royal Australian Mint
Year of the Monkey Gold Coin

Monday, February 8, 2016 begins the Year of the Monkey. It is the beginning of the year 4713 (in some traditions, 4714) in the Asian lunar system, which is the Year of the Red Fire Monkey.

This post is one of a series of four posts discussing the Asian Lunar New Year in general and the Year of the Monkey in particular. In this blog, though,  we will look at some of the business impact of the event.  

Please look at the other three posts as well. These are 

1)  One Year, Many Traditions: Lunar New Year Customs Around the World:  at http://davidvictorvector.blogspot.com/2012/01/one-new-year-many-traditions-lunar-new.html

2)  Year  of the Monkey: Some Background  on the specifics of fortune and beliefs about this year's animal sign at  http://davidvictorvector.blogspot.com/2016/01/year-of-monkey.html

3) Year of the Monkey 2016: 205 Celebrations Around the World.  This post first indicates where the Lunar New Year is an official state holiday. The post then goes on to share the wide range of events taking place outside of those countries. The listing here gives 205 major celebrations (parades, galas or other celebrations) for the Year of the Monkey  in 27 countries beyond where it is officially part of the tradition. Of these, 78 are in the United States, 30 in the United Kingdom, 21 in Canada, 19 in France, 17 in Australia, 5 in New Zealand, 4 each in the Netherlands and Thailand 3 each in Spain, the Philippines and Malaysia, and 2 in Italy and Mexico. Additionally there were 1 each in  Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Dubai, Finland, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Portugal, South Africa, and South Africa. This is available at http://davidvictorvector.blogspot.com/2016/01/year-of-monkey-2016-celebrations-around_26.html

You may also be interested to compare this year's overview of the business impact to that of last year's Year of the Horse, 2013's Year of the Snake or 2012's Year of the Dragon. Those posts are at 

Ram/Sheep/Goat: http://davidvictorvector.blogspot.com/2015/01/year-of-ramsheepgoat-lunar-new-year.html

Horse: http://davidvictorvector.blogspot.com/2014/01/year-of-horse-business-impact.html

Snake: http://davidvictorvector.blogspot.com/2013/01/year-of-snake-business-impact_22.html

Dragon: http://davidvictorvector.blogspot.com/2012/01/year-of-dragon-business-impact.html

For this post, though, we will limit the subject ot the business impact of the Year of the Monkey.

Business Impact

World's Busiest Travel Day -- The Asian New Year

Over 3.45 billion trips were made in the PRC in 2013
during the Chinese New Year season
The Asian New Year is arguably the most widely celebrated holidays on the planet, whatever the year. Because the celebration generally means that families gather together, the holiday is annually the single busiest travel day. The great movement of people is known in Chinese as Chunyun or the "Spring Movement."

In the PRC alone, during 2014's Chinese New Year season, the nation recorded over 3.6 billion travelers during a 16-day period.   Of these, according to PRC Deputy Minister of Transport Feng Zhenglin, 44.07 million were made by air, 42 million by water, 266 million trips were by train and a staggering 3.26 billion trips made by car or bus. On a single day -- February 6, 2014, the heaviest travel date the 2014 season -- 266 million rail trips were recorded, the most in history. 

This number has been steadily rising.  In 2011, a mere 2.556 billion passenger trips took place. In 2012, there were 3.2 billion trips during the Chinese New Year and in 2013, there were 3.42 billion. 

Last year, 2014, the Chinese government for the first time since 2007 did not included the eve of Chinese New Year as an official holiday. Because Chinese New Year Eve is a time of eating together as an extended family (a sort of parallel can be found in the USA's Thanksgiving), this has resulted in widespread dissatisfaction. A poll by China's Sina Weibo (the microblog firm that is a sort of Chinese counterpart to Twitter), nearly 89% of respondents indicated that they were unsatisfied with the decision not to include Chinese New Year Eve as an official holiday. 

People return home over a greater spread, meaning that while the season actually ends after one week, return trips spread over the next 20-25 or so days.
Wuhan train station during Chunun travel rush

In practical terms, this will mean that the travel crush will be even more compressed with one less travel day. The Chinese Ministry of Transport estimates that 3.2 billion of the trips will made by road this year, up slight from 3.1 billion in 2013. The road traffic annually clogs the traffic ways of the country and seriously affects the supply chain for business as well as demand for fuel, hotel space, and restaurants. 

The Chinese Ministry of Transport estimates an increase in water transport as well. They estimate that there will be 43 million boat trips in 2014, an increase of 1.1% from 2013.

China will agaiin employ  900,000 buses over the period, averaging 80 million passengers a day. In addition to regularly scheduled trains and planes, a further 700 trains and 14,000 extra flights have been scheduled during the travel crush. 

Chinese New Year ticket buyers at Harbin train station
In 2013, tickets to most Chinese cities sold out in 20 seconds
The demand for tickets for rail is particularly high.   For example, last year on January 15 alone -- the first day that tickets were open for sale for the Chinese New Year -- China Rail service sold over 300,000 tickets. All seats on routes to China's major cities sold out in approximately 20 seconds.  The PRC government estimates that on two of these days alone -- February 6 and 7 -- 980,000  people used the train service in China. This is equivalent to over three times the entire population of the United States.

Precious Metal Coins 
for the Year of the Monkey

Also affected by the Year of the Monkeyis the demand for precious metals. Since the Lunar New Year is a time of gift-giving, many governments issue precious metal collectors' coins.
Monetary Authority of Singapore
Year of the Monkey Coin Se

The Monetary Authority of Singapore, for instance, annually issues a series of Lunar New Year coins, with 10 versions available for the Year of the Monkey ranging from 20 gram copper-nickel allow coin  to a 5 troy ounce, 999.9 fine gold coin.  All 10 versions bear the same image of a side view of a stylized monkey.  Additionally, Singapore has also issued a flower-shaped colored copper-nickel coin. 
 Singapore "puzzle set" Lunar New Year coin

For the third time, Singapore has also issued a "puzzle set" coin made of 999 fine silver. The "puzzle set" consists of a central orchid to which interlock the twelve zodiac animals with images from the previous zodiac series.

For the first time ever, the nation of Bhutan has released a Lunar New Year coin with its 2016 Year of the Monkey collectible coin series, with two silver (1-ounce and 5-ounce) and a gold quarter ounce coin. The coins are minted by the Singapore Mint on behalf of Bhutan. They all features a seated monkey on the front. The obverse of the coin has a colorized image of Bhutan's Punthang Dechen Phodrang (Palace of Great Bliss).

Bhutan's first ever Lunar New Year coin series
Year of the Monkey 2016

France's Monnaie de Paris has issued a 50-euro face value 8.45 gram gold coin. The coin features a monkey with its hands to its face on the front with the "Year of the Monkey" written in both French and Chinese. On the obverse side (as in past years) is a portrait of the French fairy tale writer Jean de la Fontaine with the phrase "Fables de la Fontaine" and all 12 lunar year animals represented.

France's de la Fontaine 2016 Year of the Monkey gold coin

The Royal Australian Mint (RAM)  has issued four silver coins. One is a general issue, unlimited
Royal Australian Mint
14-sided Year of the Monkey Coin
mintage of  an 11 gram, 1
4-sided frosted silver AUD 50-cent coin. This coin shows a monkey climbing among branches.  

The other three  (traditionally round) silver coins weigh 1 ounce, 5 ounces and 1 kilo. These silver coins share the same design (though one different from the 14-sided coin). This is of a monkey surrounded by leaves. with the 1/10 ounce gold coin. All of the coins feature Queen Elizabeth on their fronts.

The Royal Australian Mint has also issued a .999 gold 1-troy-ounce Year of the Monkey coin. This coin shows a different monkey though also climbing through the branches. This is the image shown at the opening of this post above.

Perth Mint of Australia
Gold Year of the Monkey Coin
Not to be confused with the Royal Australian Mint, the Perth Mint of Australia for the Year of the Monkey has issued a series of 99.9% pure gold coin, and a 99.9% pure silver coin.  The gold coins feature a lone monkey looking over its shoulder at a peach growing on the tree in which it is sitting. In Chinese literature, the Monkey King Sun Wukong, a character from the 16th-century novel "Journey to the West," after being charged to guard the peaches of immortality instead ends up eating them.

Perth Mint of Australia
Silver Year of the Monkey Coin
With Cognac Diamond Eye
The Perth Mint of Australia silver coins depict an adult monkey with a baby monkey holding a peach. In both gold and silver coins, a version is available with the monkeys and peaches both set in color he peach is a Chinese symbol of longevity and immortality.  A final version is a .999 silver 1 kilo coin with a cognac diamond set in the adult monkey's eye.

Rectangular People's Bank of China
Gold Year of the Monkey Coin
The People's Bank of China has issued 10 gold and seven silver coins for the Year of the Monkey. This includes an unusual rectangular 2000 yuan (app. $300) 5-ounce (142 gram) gold coin. 

In addition to the rectangular coin, China has issued round, fan-shaped and lotus-shaped coins in various denominations. The lotus and fan coins use the same monkey as the rectangular coin. 

A totally different design is set on the round coins, featured on the 1-ounce (28.35 gram) gold coin decorated with a folk-art-inspired monkey colored red with green leaves.
Folk-Art People's Bank of China Round Coin

The government of Fiji has also issued a Year of the Monkey commemorative coin enhanced by gemstone, it this case a silver coin with a pair of 24-karat gold monkeys under a branch with gold flowers both pointing at a central pink pearl (the color of the pearl changes annually). 
Fiji Year of the Monkey Coin
With Rose Pearl
Royal Canadian Mint
Year of the Monkey set

The Canadian government has issued eight new Year of the Monkey coins in its Lunar New Year series. Two round coins are joined by a lotus-shaped coin.The two round coins  feature a monkey carrying a peach and the lotus-shaped coin is of a less-stylized, furry monkey climbing in a tree. All of these are based on designs by Canadian artist Aries Cheung.
UK Year of the Monkey coin

The Royal Mint of the United Kingdom continued its Lunar New Year mintage begun with its first issue only two years ago. As with the last two years, the coins were designed by UK artist Wuon-Gean Ho. The coins come in a range of three silver and three gold weights and feature a monkey in the foreground leaping between branches with a tiny monkey in the background also leaping through the treetops.On the flipside is the portrait of Queen Elizabeth.

Belarus Year of the Monkey coin
Belarus issued a Lunar Zodiac coin again this year (this is only its third in the series).The Year of the Monkey coin comes in one denomination only: 92.5% pure silver. The coin features on one side a pair of stylized circus monkeys. As with previous years, the obverse side, the coin depicts the working of a clock, enhanced with cubic zirconium stone with Cyrllic and Chinese writing.

One of the more unique coins issued is from the Laos mint. The 99.99% silver coin has a jadeite ring at its center engraved with 24-karat letters reading in Chinese and English, and  inside of which is a 24-karat monkey. The edges of the coin contain monkeys climbing, swinging and moving around the coin's silver circle.

Laos Year of the Monkey coin

The tiny pacific nation of Palu has issued a comical Year of the Monkey coin.  With .999 silver and gilded highlights, the coin shows a cartoon monkey scratching its head.

Rwanda's 3-D
Monkey coins
Perhaps the most unusual offering this year is the government of Rwanda's three-dimensional coins for the Year of the Monkey. This is a series of three different monkey sculptures sitting on a coin, one of yellow gold, one of red gold and one of "antique" finish. 

In addition to those mentioned above, special Year of the Monkey silver and/or gold coins have been issued (as in years past) by the New Zealand Mint, the National Bank of Ukraine, the Macau Mint, the Mongolian Mint and the Mints of the Pacific nations of Niue and of the Cook Islands as well as the New Zealand protectorate of Tokelau.  

Year of the Monkey Postage Stamps
Issuing Lunar New Year commemorative postage stamps has become an annual tradition in many countries, and an entire philatelic tradition of collecting these special issues has a wide following both in and outside of Asia.

United States is a relative newcomer to the Lunar New Year stamps, with the Year of the Monkey stamp for 2016 the ninth that it has issued. This year's Year of the Monkey United States Postal Service stamp is a "Forever" stamp (to accommodate postal rate increases). The stamp features a small golden monkey in the upper left corner with a main design of peonies (for blessing and good fortune). As in past years, the artist collaborating on the stamp remain the same. The peony painting is once again the work of artist Kam Mak. The Year of the Monkey is acknowledged through a traditional Chinese paper-cut monkey by Chinese-American folk artist Clarence Lee  and the character for monkey idone in grass-style by calligrapher Lau Bun.  Both Lee and Bun's  work have decorated all eight of the previous Lunar New Year USPS stamps).

United States Postal Service Year of the Monkey stamp

Canada Post traditionally issues a pair of stamps for each lunar new year, one for domestic and one for international use. Both of this year's stamps depict the Monkey King Sun Wukong.  The domestic stamp shows the Monkey King leaping while swinging his fighting staff with puffs of smoke rising behind him and up beyond the left side of the stamp's frame. The international stamp features the Monkey King wearing a crown which extends above the frame of the stamp.   Both have the word "monkey" written in French, English and Chinese, and both are permanent stamps (to accommodate postal rate increases). Both stamps are designed by Albert Ng and Linna Xu.
Canada Post Year of the Monkey stamps

The People's Republic of China's Year of the Monkey China Post stamp for 2016 come in two versions, though both with the same 1.20 yuan denomination. One stamp features a male monkey hanging from a branch holding a peach (symbol of longevity and a reference to the Monkey King story). The other stamp depicts a folder female monkey receiving kisses from two smaller monkeys, symbolic of family (and perhaps the lifting of the one-child policy last year).

China Post Year of the Monkey stamp

Taiwan's Year of the Monkey stamps feature three denominations, each featuring a stylized monkey and peonies. The $12 stamp shows two monkeys, one hanging from its tails from a fan-bar reaching outside the frame of the stamp while the other holds a peach in its hand. In both, the monkeys scratch their head, symbolizing the sign's innate curiosity. The $13 features a curled-tailed monkey walking on all fours, while the $3.50 stamp features a monkey holding a peach in one hand while resting on the other.

New Zealand has issued four Year of the Monkey stamps in different denominations. Its 80-cent stamp features the ancient Chinese pictogram for "monkey" from which the modern character evolved on a red background (as red is a main color used for the Lunar New Year).    In a particularly intriguing touch of multiculturalism, the $1.40 stamp blends Maori and Chinese cultures as the central red monkey holding a peach is done in traditional Maori paper-cut. The $2.00 stamp likewise blends cultures, as the modern cartoon monkey is shown hanging from the a silver fern branch and its tail curls into the shape of a silver fern. In 2015, New Zealand ran a referendum on changing its flag, and the silver fern design was the initial winner for the design. Finally, the $2.50 stamp depicts New Zealand's Monkey Island, and features a barred godwit, which annually migrates between China and New Zealand.

New Zealand's 2016 Year of the Monkey stamps

France's Year of the Monkey
2016 stamp is the last in
its 12-year lunar new year series
With the 2016 Year of the Monkey stamp this year, France finishes its 12-animal cycle in its Lunar New Year series. The French-Chinese artist Li Yaozhong has designed the stamp, as he has for 10 of the other 12 in the series. It features a monkey jumping down from above and seemingly about to leap out of the stamp at the viewer. The stamp says Year of the Monkey in French above the monkey and in Chinese below it. 
Singapore's Year of the Monkey
2016 stamp series

All three Singapore's 2016 Year of the Monkey stamps were designed -- as in earlier years -- by Singaporean artist  Leo Teck Chong. Each features what he describes as the monkey's traits: creative, witty and agile.

The Philippines' PhilPost issued two stamps for the 2016 Year of the Monkey.  On the top is the Tagalog New Year's greeting, "Manigong Bagong Taon" and at the bottom are the Chinese character for "monkey" and the English "2016 Year of the Monkey." The 10p stamp features a monkey's smiling face and the 30p a monkey loping along. 

As is annually the case, among the most elaborate stamp issues for the Lunar New Year comes from Liechtenstein. The 2016 Year of the Monkey offering features a red monkey design with gold embossing created from an intricate silhouette cut using a laser by the artist Stefan Erne.  

Among other special issue postage stamps are those from Antigua & Barbuda, Australia, Christmas Island, Croatia, France, Guernsey Islands, Hong Kong, Hungary, Japan, Macau, Montserrat, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, and Thailand.

Year of the Monkey Special Issue Products
Panerai Luminor Sealand
Year of the Monkey watch
Because the Lunar New Year is a time of gift-giving, many companies have introduced Year of the Monkey items for that purpose.

The Italian watchmaker Panerai Luminor Sealand has released a Year of the Monkey watch that features a flip-cover lid with an elaborate gold-inlay monkey decoration. Each watch is hand-made with the engraving hand-done and gold hand inlaid, as has been the case with each watch in the series begun in 2009.

US luxury jewelry company Harry Winston for 2016 has offered a woman's Year of the Monkey watch featuring a 24-karat monkey based on Chinese paper cut artwork. The monkey has a diamond eye on a mother-of-pearl pink face sprinkled with hand-set golden flecks. The 12 o'clock point features an emerald-cut diamond and the face is surrounded by 74 brilliant-cut diamonds totaling 2.47 carats. 

The Swiss luxury watchmaker Chopard's Year of the Monkey offering is an urushi hand-crafted timepiece. Urushi is the laborious hand-lacquerware of Japan. In addition, Chopard has enhanced this with maki-e (Japanese traditional gold dust application using tiny bamboo tubing). The painting of the monkey and scene are the work of no-less than Kilchiro Masumura, the greatest living urushi master who holds the official status in Japan of "living human treasure." Moreover, the work on each watch is personally supervised by Master Masumura. 
Chopard's Year of the Monkey ushuri and maki-e watch
Another famous Swiss luxury watchmaker, Vacheron Constantin, has released a Year of the Monkey watch in its M├ętiers d’Art Collection. The watches come in either platinum or rose gold. 
Vacheron Constantin Year of the Monkey watch

Tiffany & Co. Year of the Monkey charm

Another Swiss watchmaker with a Year of the Monkey offering (though one of a much less expensive price) is Swatch. The Swiss company has a special issue Lunar New Year Watch they call "Lucky Monkey" showing a red monkey inspired by traditional Chinese paper cuts.

For the Lunar New Year, the US-based Tiffany & Co. has introduced an 18-karat gold monkey charm with eyes made of round diamonds. The monkey hangs by its arm from the connecting loop and is designed by Paloma Picasso.
Gucci's Monkey key chain
Harrod's Year of the Monkey
coin purse

Italy's Gucci also had a Year of the Monkey offering with an monkey key chain with glass pearls. 

The UK high-end store Harrods has a signature collection of Year of the Monkey items, including a red PVC shoulder bag, coin purse and cosmetics bag all featuring the same design of a pair of golden monkeys holding a peach with the Chinese character for monkey.   Harrod's also has issued a Year of the Monkey cotton tote bag featuring the same design, although on a white background. Harrod's has also issued a monkey-themed phone case and pen, as well as a plush monkey stuffed animal among its offerings for the Lunar New Year.

Year of the Monkey
Louis Vuitton
Year of the Monkey necklace
The French luxury design house Lanvin offered up a very large monkey-themed necklace during its 125th Anniversary runway show last Spring, in advance of the Year of the Monkey.  Lanvin also offered a monkey-inspired brocade coat.

Louis Vuitton has also released a Year of the Monkey necklace and bracelet set. They both feature a gold monkey with diamond eyes.

Prada Monkey
Luggage tag
Italy's Prada has issues a monkey luggage tag and monkey key chain for 2016. These directly have monkeys on them. Prada also has offered bright red shoes and clutches which they have indicated are for the Lunar New Year as well, although they do not actually have a monkey on them specifically.

Kate Spade earrings for
Year of the Monkey 
Another designer with Year of the Monkey offerings is New York-based Kate Spade which for 2016 has offered both monkey studs and dangling monkey pearl earrings.
Givenchy's primate scream
Year of the Monkey ensemble

Another French designer, Givenchy, released its "primate scream" men's ensemble. It features two screaming monkeys.
Tsumori Chisato
Barrel of Monkey dress

Japanese high fashion designer Tsumori Chisato's released a "barrel of monkeys" design in its Fall 2014 collection that is making a resurgence for the Year of the Monkey in 2016. 

Sweden's H & M for 2016 introduced an entire line of Year of the Monkey Lunar New Year offerings. This includes four women's outfits and three men's. 
H & M Year of the Monkey line

 The US-based DKNY is offering an intarsia-knit monkey long-sleeved sweater for the Year of the Monkey. The monkey is in white and shades of gray on a black background.
DKNY's Year of the Monkey
Intarsia-knit sweater

Cross Year of the Monkey Pen
Smaller items that are regularly given as gifts are also themed with Year of the Monkey motifs

Along this line, the US pen maker Cross has issued a highly detailed Year of the Monkey  pen inlaid with a monkey motif engraved  inlaid with 23 karat gold monkey on either a teal or brushed platinum plate base. The monkey selected is itself significant, as it depicts the Chinese snub-nosed monkey, which is an endangered species to which Cross hopes to draw attention with its offering.

Mont Blanc Year of the Monkey Pen
Germany's Mont Blanc has issued another top-of-the-line Year of the Monkey pen. The pen has a 925 sterling silver cap engraved with a monkey. The bottom of the cap holds a green peridot, which is the birthstone associated with the year. 

Swiss luxury pen maker maker Caran d'Ache also produced a Year of the Monkey offering for 2016. The black lacquer pen is engraved with a yellow gold monkey

Caran d'Ache Year of the Monkey Pen

Victorinox Year of the Monkey
Huntsman Knife

Victorinox (of Swiss Army Knife fame) has introduced a Year of the Monkey Swiss Huntsman Knife. The knife features a gold monkey with the traditional Swiss Army knife red casing. The Swiss Huntman knife itself comes in its own Year of the Monkey red gift box with the character for Monkey embossed in gold.
The US cigarmaker Davidoff has introduced a Year of the Monkey cigar limited production cigar line. These are high-end, hand-crafted cigars. This marks the fourth year that the company has done so. The cigars come in a collector's box.  

Godiva Year of the Monkey
Chinese tea-filled chocolate
Belgium's Godiva for 2016 is offering three Year of the Monkey fine chocolates: one in dark chocolate, one in milk chocolate and one in white chocolate. All three feature the same monkey shape. The chocolates come in a variety of fillings but in honor of the Chinese New Year also offer three uniquely Chinese tea filling choices: Jasmine Green tea, Pu Erh and Oolong tea.

Johnnie Walker Blue Label
Year of the Monkey bottles
In alcoholic drinks, Scotland's Johnnie Walker has introduced a special Blue Label Year of the Monkey limited edition.  The bottles come in a set of four, depicting monkeys leaping in various positions.

Chinese Monkey King actor Zhang Jinlai
posing with a Monkey King Pepsi
As for soft drinks, Pepsi is releasing a Monkey King can for the Year of the Monkey. Pepsi's ad campaign will feature actor Zhang Jinlai who became famous playing the Monkey King in the 1986 Chinese television series Journey to the West based on the classic novel about the Monkey King. As part of the series, Pepsi has also created a short documentary regarding Zhang's ascent to star status by playing the Monkey King role. For more on this, see the YouTube site at https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=EmVsCIzgVaE

Coca-Cola Year of the Monkey
Special Edition 8-pack case
Coca-Cola is also offering a Year of the Monkey theme for its cans. For the Lunar New Year, Coke has rolled out an 8-pack special edition in a special case.

Lay's Year of the Monkey
selfie potato chip bags
Lay's potato chips has also rolled out a Year of the Monkey campaign. For the Lunar New Year, the company has released a series of bags whose tops have the bottom half of different monkey faces. The bags are meant for monkey-face selfless which, of course, feature the Lay's bag in the selfless. 

Starbucks Japan offerings
Starbucks is famous for brand localization across the globe. For its Year of the Monkey offerings, it has released similar but different monkey-themed products for Japan, Taiwan and the People's Republic of China.

In Japan, Starbucks has rolled out plastic thermos cups with climbing monkeys, a monkey-themed card, a stuffed monkey and a red ceramic cup with a white monkey on it.

Starbucks Taiwan offerings
In Taiwan, Starbucks is offering a white monkey tote, a blue ceramic cup with a white monkey (but a different and much largest monkey than the Japanese version) and a gift card with its own unique Taiwan monkey theme.
Starbucks PRC offerings

Finally, in the PRC, Starbucks has issued a stuffed monkey (the same as the Japanese one more or less with a ceramic mug featuring a parent and child monkey on a white ceramic mug with a gold handle and various gift cards and coffees limited to the PRC market.

Several sport shoe makers have released Year of the Monkey shoes and sportswear outfits. Nike, Reebok, adidas, and Converse have all issued Lunar New Year shoes.  
Nike's 2016 Year of the Monkey edition shoes

Estee Lauder
Year of the Monkey
cosmetics case
In another area, the US-based Estee Lauder has released a Year of the Monkey cosmetics case. France's Yves Saint-Laurent has offered a new "Chinese New Year Palette" in a gold and red case (though with no sign of a zodiac animal).

Finally, several more consumable items have been released in special Lunar New Year limited editions. The Belgian-based chocolate-makers Neuhaus and Godiva, for instance, both sell chocolates in Year of the Goat gift boxes.  

Hasbro's Year of the Monkey
Optimus Prime Transformer
Finally, in a newcomer to the field, Hasbro has released a Year of the Monkey version of Optimus Prime in its Transformers toy line. 

These represent just some of the Year of the Monkey products that will come out in honor of the Lunar New Year. If you have others, please do add them in the comments to this blog.

As with all of my posts on this blog, this is meant only to give the view of one person (me). There are far more expert writers than myself... this is just a taste. 

Gung Hay Fat Choy! (May prosperity be with you!)
Further Reading

China Daily, "'Chunyan' sees 3.6 billion trips," February 24, 2014. http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2014-02/24/content_17302407.htm

CRI English, "China's Road Passengers Up During 'Chunyun'," December 24, 2013: http://english.cri.cn/6909/2013/12/24/2361s804908.htm

Michelle FlorCruz, "China's 'Chunyun' Spring Festival Travel Rush Begins: 3.62 Billion Trips Expected," International Business Times, January 15, 2014. http://www.ibtimes.com/chinas-chunyun-spring-festival-travel-rush-begins-362-billion-trips-expected-1541442China 

Jonathan Kaiman, "China's 2014 official holiday schedule misses out Lunar New Year's Eve," The Guardian, December 23, 2013,  http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/dec/23/china-2014-official-holiday-schedule-lunar-new-year-eve

Ruru Zhou, "Chinese Spring Festival 2015," China Highlights, January 9, 2015  http://www.chinahighlights.com/travelguide/special-report/chinese-new-year/

Xinhua.net (February 24, 2014), "3.6 bln trips during China's 40-day 'chunun'": http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-02/24/c_133139420.htm
 Year of th 

Clip Art Sources

Royal Mint of Australia Monkey Gold Coin: http://www.apmex.com/product/93408/2016-australia-1-oz-gold-lunar-year-of-the-monkey-bu-ram

Photos of Wuhan train station during Chunun travel rush: Christian Science Monitor, January 30, 2013: http://www.csmonitor.com/Photo-Galleries/In-Pictures/China-s-chun-yun-peak-travel-season#250370

Bhutan's first ever Lunar New Year coin series Year of the Monkey 2016: http://www.coinworld.com/news/world-coins/2015/12/Singapore-Mint-issues-2016-Year-of-the-Monkey-coins-for-Bhutan.html

France's De la Fontaine 2016 Year of the Monkey coin: http://www.philatelie72.com/euro/Monnaiedeparis.asp?typ=15

Royal Mint of Australia Year of the Monkey 14-sided silver coin: http://en.numista.com/catalogue/pieces77123.html

Perth Mint of Australia Silver Year of the Monkey Coin With Cognac Diamond Eye: http://www.perthmint.com.au/images/product/250/3889-2016-YearOfTheMonkey-Silver-1kilo-GemEye-OnEdge.jpg

Rectangular Gold Coin and Folk-Art People's Bank of China Round Coins:  http://www.coinworld.com/news/world-coins/2015/10/china-launches-year-of-the-monkey-coins-for-2016.html

United States Postal Service Year of the Monkey stamp:  http://virtualstampclub.com/lloydblog/?p=2774

Singapore's Year of the Monkey stamps: http://www.omigo.com.sg/zodiac-series-spp114030901.html 

PhilPost's Year of the Monkey 2016 stamps:  https://www.phlpost.gov.ph/stamp-releases.php?id=3738

Harrods Year of the Monkey coin purse: http://www.harrods.com/product/chinese-new-year-tote-bag/harrods/000000000004965385

Lanvin Year of the Monkey necklace: http://www.farfetch.com/shopping/women/lanvin-monkey-pendant-necklace-item-10982448.aspx

Louis Vuitton Year of the Monkey necklace: http://brandchannel.com/2016/01/14/year-of-monkey-3-011416/

Kate Spade Year of the Monkey earrings: https://cdnc.lystit.com/200/250/tr/photos/4038-2016/01/15/kate-spade-new-york-cream-multi-monkey-see-monkey-do-leverbacks-beige-product-1-842150222-normal.jpeg

Givenchy's "primate scream" Year of the Monkey ensemble: http://www.vogue.com/13383124/monkey-runway-fashion-valentino-chinese-zodiac/

Japanese high fashion designer Tsumori Chisato's dress: http://www.vogue.com/13383124/monkey-runway-fashion-valentino-chinese-zodiac/

H & M Year of the Monkey line http://www.mariefranceasia.com/fashion/latest-news/new-collections/chinese-new-year-2016-fashion-ready-hms-cny-collection-146343.html

 DKNY Year of the Monkey intarsia-knit sweater:  DKNY's Year of the Monkey Intarsia-knit sweater

Victorinox Year of the Monkey Huntsman Knife: http://www.swissarmy.com/us/en/Products/Swiss-Army-Knives/Medium-Pocket-Knives/Huntsman/p/1.3713-X5

Godiva Year of the Monkey Chinese tea-filled chocolate: http://www.godiva.com.sg/seasonal/2016-cny/en/chocolate.html

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