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Gemfields Sees Robust Demand at Ruby Auction

Dec 22, 2016 4:00 AM   By Rapaport News
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Gemfields sold $30.4 million worth of rubies and corundum at an auction in Singapore last week as prices indicated a healthy market for gemstones.

The company sold 1.1 million carats, out of a total 1.4 million carats offered from the Montepuez ruby deposit in Mozambique, it said. The auction was 80 percent sold by volume and 85 percent sold by market value.

While the average price of $27.79 per carat indicated “good overall global demand” relative to previous auctions, Gemfields explained that a variation in quality and stone sizes skewed a direct comparison of top-line sales.

“The prices achieved, combined with the high percentage of the value sold, fully support our view of ongoing solid demand for responsibly sourced Mozambican rubies across key markets and categories,” said Ian Harebottle, Gemfields’ chief executive officer.

In total, 39 companies placed bids and items under the hammer included both treated and untreated rough rubies. However, some customers were unable to attend amid the negative impact India’s demonetization policy had on cashflow, Gemfields pointed out. This followed the company’s earlier decision to postpone an emerald auction from December to February so that clients can adjust to the new business environment.

India invalidated its INR 500 and INR 1,000 currency notes last month, resulting in a liquidity crisis that damaged demand for diamonds and gemstones as the sector is highly cash-focused.

Gemfields said it has sold $41.1 million worth of rough gemstones since the start of fiscal 2017 that began July 1. These also include rough emeralds and beryl from the Kagem mine in Zambia.
Tags: beryl, corundum, Demonetization, emeralds, Gemfields, gemstones, Ian Harebottle, India, Kagem, mining, Montepuez, Mozambique, Rapaport News, rubies, ruby, Singapore, zambia
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