Connect with us

Press Releases

Diamond Trade Cautious at End of Year

1ct. RAPI up 0.1% in December but down 21% in 2023.

mm

Published

on

(PRESS RELEASE) LAS VEGAS, NV — Diamond trading was quiet in late December as wholesalers took vacation between Christmas and New Year. The industry was cautious due to sluggish US consumer demand and competition from synthetics.

The holiday season for the overall jewelry market was weaker than in 2022 but in line with expectations. US jewelry sales fell 2% year on year for the period between November 1 and December 24, Mastercard SpendingPulse reported. Restaurant revenues rose 7.8%, indicating a shift from products to experiences. Chinese diamond demand remained slow amid an economic slump.

Polished prices rose in most categories as India’s two-month voluntary freeze on rough imports — which ended December 15 — reduced inventories. India’s rough imports for November slid 76% year on year to $314 million. Manufacturers were under less pressure to sell, since they needed less cash to buy rough. Holiday orders supported prices for 1- to 3-carat, F-I, VS-SI, RapSpec A3+ diamonds.

© Copyright 2024 by Rapaport USA Inc.

© Copyright 2024 by Rapaport USA Inc.

The RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI) for 1-carat diamonds rose 0.1% in December. The index for 0.30-carat stones increased 1%, and the 0.50-carat RAPI climbed 2.2%. Prices for fancy shapes were stable or declined.

The 0.50- and 1-carat RAPI categories had their worst full year on record, falling 26% and 21% respectively. However, the trend improved from November onward as US retailers bought for the holidays and Indian factories lowered polished production. The number of diamonds on RapNet fell 8% during 2023, totaling 1.6 million on January 1, 2024.

Advertisement

Some sightholders expect De Beers to reduce rough prices in January to stimulate sales. This could have an immediate impact on polished prices. To avoid an oversupply, manufacturers must ensure that their purchases match polished demand.

January also marks the introduction of broader Group of Seven (G7) restrictions on Russian diamonds. An expanded ban on any polished resulting from Russian rough begins March 1. The implementation could profoundly affect supply dynamics.

Diamond Trade Cautious at End of Year

Advertisement

SPONSORED VIDEO

Moving Up — Not Out — with Wilkerson

Trish Parks has always wanted to be in the jewelry business and that passion has fueled her success. The original Corinth Jewelers opened in the Mississippi town of the same name in 2007. This year, Parks moved her business from its original strip mall location to a 10,000-square foot standalone store. To make room for fresh, new merchandise, she asked Wilkerson to organize a moving sale. “What I remember most about the sale is the outpouring excitement and appreciation from our customers,” says Parks. Would she recommend Wilkerson to other jewelers? “I would recommend Wilkerson because they came in, did what they were supposed to and made us all comfortable. And we met our goals.”

Promoted Headlines

Most Popular