Industry News by Nemesis

Rapaport Weekly Market Comment

May 11, 2017

Dealers preparing for Las Vegas shows concerned that US orders have slowed as retailers reduce their inventory requirements. Chinese demand continues to improve. Rough trade strong with rising premiums on secondary market as De Beers limits supply at May sight. Stornoway 1Q sales of $36M ($77/ct.). Mountain Province 1Q sales $38M as Gahcho Kué average price ($72/ct.) disappoints. Hong Kong 1Q polished imports +11% to $4.7B, exports +6% to $3.4B. Israel 1Q polished exports +15% to $1.7B, rough imports +4% to $785M. Belgium April polished exports -13% to $779M, rough imports -43% to $694M. Antwerp’s Carat+ show demonstrates appetite for high-end, diamond-focused trade event.

Fancies: Steady demand for Pears in the Far East, with Ovals overtaking Pears as the strongest shape in the US. Shortages of fine-quality large Pears and Ovals. Cushions stable. Emeralds selling better than Princesses. Some demand for big fancy shapes, but buyers extremely picky. Improving demand for Radiant, 3.01 to 9.99 ct., D-I, SI1-SI2 elongated stones. Large price differentials between excellent- and average-cut fancies. Off-make, poorly cut fancies illiquid and very hard to sell, even at very deep discounts. 

United States: Positive mood among large-stone dealers.Good demand for 5 ct., G-H, VS1-SI2 diamonds. VVS weak, but improvement seen in D, flawless among big stones. Steady demand for bread-and-butter 1 ct., G-H, VS-SI diamonds for the engagement ring market. Stable Mother’s Day jewelry retail sales. 

Belgium: Sentiment improved during upbeat Antwerp Carat+ show. More independent European jewelers looking to source via programs. Steady demand for dossiers, 0.30 to 1 ct., G-I, VS1-SI1 and GIA-certified 1 ct.-plus, G-H, VS-SI diamonds. Dealers seeing better prices and profit from polished sourced in secondary market than direct supply from manufacturers. Rough trading strong. 

Israel: Polished trading stable, with rising expectations for Las Vegas shows. US cautious as demand for I1 goods has softened. China working well. Good demand for 0.30 ct., D-J, VVS-SI diamonds and steady demand for 1 ct., I-K, SI goods. Bourse expanding partnerships with online retail platforms. 

India: Market relatively slow, with pockets of good demand for select categories such as 0.50 to 0.90 ct., SIs. Some dealers on vacation during May school holiday period. Foreign buyers looking for stock ahead of Las Vegas, while suppliers keeping prices steady before the show. Polished inventory levels rising as large manufacturers boost production. Strong rough demand continues. 

Hong Kong: Wholesale market stable, with many dealers still on vacation. Positive sentiment due to improvement in Chinese retail, but consumers shifting to lower price points. Steady dealer demand for 0.50 to 1 ct., D-H, VS-SI diamonds. Rising consumer interest in color diamonds and gemstones, especially sizes above 2 ct. Major jewelers exploring growth potential on e-commerce and mobile platforms. 


Source: Rapaport

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