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Rapaport Market Report

Sep 22, 2016 8:56 AM   By Rapaport News
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Sentiment improves at Hong Kong show (7/10) with steady traffic but restrained buying ahead of National Day festival (Oct. 1). Good demand for 0.30 to 2 ct., G-J, VS-SI diamonds but sales were limited as suppliers refused very deep discounts. 3 to 4 ct. weak. Mixed demand for 5 ct.-plus. Picky Far East buyers shifting to lower price points and restricting inventory purchases. Excess Chinese inventories have been coming down with some buying to meet current demand. ALROSA Aug. rough sale +53% to $243M. Petra Diamonds FY revenue +1% to $431M, profit +12% to $67M. India Aug. polished exports +11% to $1.9B, rough imports +72% to $1.1B. De Beers, Mountain Province open Gahcho Kué mine.

Fancies: Markets slow. Large 5 ct.-plus fine-quality goods getting more interest. Curved fancy shapes improving. Ovals and Pears steady. Square shapes slow. Emeralds selling with improving large-stone demand. Top-quality fine-cut fancy shapes OK but buyers are extremely picky. Overall fancy shape prices relatively soft. U.S. demand supporting market for commercial-quality fancies, especially for sizes under 1 ct. Far East fancy demand weak. Buyers are very selective and insisting on excellent-shape proportions. Significant price differentials between excellent- and average-cut fancies. Off-make, poorly-cut fancies illiquid and very hard to sell, even at very deep discounts.

Global Comments

United States: Steady trading in New York with sentiment lifted by positive reports from Hong Kong show. Dealers focused on filling orders for the holiday season. Steady demand for 1 to 2 ct. G-J, VS-SI goods. Melee weak due to concerns about synthetics and sluggish fashion jewelry demand. Bridal market continues to grow.

Belgium: Trading more upbeat than before Hong Kong show.Good demand from U.S. retail programs.Steady demand for 0.30 to 2 ct., G-J, VS-SI diamonds. Curved fancy shapes improving. Some interest in 1 ct., D-F, IF-VVS goods from individual collectors but European high-end luxury brands cautious.

Israel: Improved mood as dealers returned from Hong Kong.Steady demand for dossiers and 1 ct., G-J, VS-SI, GIA diamonds. 3 ct. weak but prices firm for better-quality RapSpec A2, large stones (3X, none) due to scarcity. Focus shifting to U.S. market for holiday orders. Continued uncertainty regarding bank financing and negotiations with Tax Authority.

India: Stable market with steady U.S. demand. Chinese demand improving but Far East still cautious after Hong Kong show. Melee weak with pockets of better demand in +8 segment. Cushions and ovals steady, square fancy shapes weak. Margins tight due to expensive rough with steady manufacturing before Diwali (Oct. 30).

Hong Kong:Dealers focused on closing transactions from last week’s show. Positive mood from the show. Slow sales did not reflect decent buyer traffic. Cautious buyers pushed for higher discounts, while suppliers held prices firm to protect margins. Hong Kong retail sentiment weak due to tourist slump and high rentals. Chinese demand steady and growing at lower price points.
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