RAPAPORT... The U.S. consumer price index (CPI) for jewelry was basically flat, or down by just 0.5 percent, year on year at 176.16 points in November; however, the reading was 1.5 points lower than October a full three points lower than September's index. The highest CPI was 183.19 points in January 2012. The average monthly CPI for the first 11 months of the year was 0.3 percent lower year on year at 177.78 points.
The jewelry CPI reading in November marked its 34th consecutive month with a reading of more than 170 points, continuing to maintain a historically strong inflation trend.
After reaching a record early in 2012, the prices of gold, platinum and diamonds have remained under pressure, contributing to a slightly lower CPI for most of this year. Gold was about 27 percent lower year on year in November and platinum was down by nearly 15 percent. The RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI), the global benchmark for polished diamond prices, dropped 4.7 percent year on year for 1-carat diamonds in November, the index for 0.50-carat diamonds fell 1.7 percent and it declined 2.9 percent for 3-carat stones. However, RAPI for 0.30-carat diamonds jumped 8.2 percent in November.
Meanwhile, the CPI for all product categories combined increased 1.2 percent year on year in November to 233.89 points, or just slightly lower than the record high that was set in September.