Diamond markets quiet and in vacation mode
- Polished inventory levels in current diamond markets sufficient to see dealers through the third quarter.
- Manufacturers maintaining high production levels with $1.8B of rough sales to India this May.
- Cutter profitability a concern during this week’s Alrosa sale.
- Continued strength in e-commerce as Amazon’s Prime Day exceeds its Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.
- Graff Diamonds Int’l 2016 sales -10% to $570M, profit -66% to $16M.
- Chow Tai Fook 1Q China sales +17%, HK/Macau +7%.
- Michael Hill FY global sales +6% to $437M, but US sales weak.
- Belgium’s June polished exports -12% to $1B, rough imports +5% to $997M.
- Tiffany & Co. appoints Alessandro Bogliolo as CEO.
Fancies Diamond Markets
- Ovals best-selling fancy shape in US market, with shortage of 3 ct. stones.
- Cushions gaining popularity.
- Steady demand for Pears in the Far East.
- Emeralds improving and selling better than Princesses in larger 2 ct.+ sizes.
- Some demand for big fancy shapes such as Radiant, 3 ct.+, D-I, SI1-SI2 elongated stones, but buyers extremely picky. Large price differentials between excellent- and average-cut fancies. Off-make, poorly cut fancies illiquid and hard to sell, even at very deep discounts.
United States Diamond Market
- Trading quiet with dealers on vacation. Activity expected to remain slow through July-August summer period.
- Buyers looking for bargains during the slow period, but suppliers maintaining firm prices.
- Retailers insisting on memo rather than buying.
- Jewelry sales stable, with seasonal bridal demand during ongoing wedding period.
Diamond Market Belgium
- Sentiment weak, as trading is expected to remain slow until the bourses close for summer break (July 31 to August 18). Steady demand for commercial-quality 0.30 to 2 ct., H-J, SI diamonds.
- Buyers pushing for higher discounts, with some suppliers accepting losses to raise liquidity.
- Good demand for unique fancy colors.
- Rough trading stable.
Diamond Market Israel
- Market quiet with US clients on vacation.
- Trading in 0.30 to 0.49 ct. goods has slowed following a period of improved Chinese demand in 1H.
- Stable demand for 1 ct., G-J, VS-SI, RapSpec A3+ diamonds.
- Dealers expecting market improvement from September Hong Kong show.
- High rough prices limiting manufacturers’ profit.
Indian Diamond Market
- Polished trading slow with US buyers on summer vacation.
- Weak demand for lower-quality piqué goods, with fewer orders than expected after Las Vegas show.
- Polished inventories rising as manufacturers maintain production levels despite sluggish demand.
- Positive outlook for local jewelry sales after good start to monsoon season and as large retailers expect to benefit from tax reforms.
Hong Kong Diamond Market
- Dealer market cautious, with shift to lower price points.
- Good demand for better-quality SIs and steady demand for 0.30 to 0.50 ct., F-H, VS-SI, VG+ GIA-graded diamonds. Retailers more optimistic after 1H increase in tourist arrivals.
- Brick-and-mortar jewelers seeing greater competition from online sellers.
- Jewelers discounting and raising promotional activity to boost summer sales.
“Having the opportunity to follow the market frequently gives you the opportunity to see if you need to reevaluate your strategy and commercial tactics.”