US polished-diamond trading slowed last year, according to government data.
Polished imports dropped 6% to $21.62 billion and, by volume, slid 9% to 9.8 million carats. The average price increased 4% to $2,205 per carat.
Polished exports fell 4% to $18.02 billion, while net polished imports — the excess of imports over exports — slipped 14% to $3.61 billion.
Rough imports for the year were up 23% to $1.06 billion, while rough exports grew 54% to $938 million. Net rough imports plummeted 51% to $123 million.
The US net diamond account — the sum of rough and polished imports minus total exports — declined 16% to $3.73 billion.
Polished-diamond imports for December fell 4% year on year to $1.48 billion, with polished exports down 2% at $1.33 billion. Net polished imports for December slumped 19% to $147 million.
Image: Diamond Dealers Club of New York