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Diamond Markets Reflect Uncertain Outlook

RAPI for 1ct. up 0.2% in April

May 5, 2020 5:20 AM   By Rapaport
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RAPAPORT PRESS RELEASE, May 5, 2020, Las Vegas… Diamond trading was restricted in April due to the coronavirus pandemic and global lockdowns. Sentiment was weak, with dealers frustrated by the inability to resume business. The industry was focused on the Far East as China and Hong Kong started to open, while the outlook for the US remained uncertain.

The RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI™) for 1-carat diamonds was basically flat for the month due to the low volume of trade. The index was down 8.5% since the beginning of the year.

RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI™)
April Year to Date
Jan. 1 to May 1
Year on Year
May 1, 2019, to May. 1 2020
RAPI 0.30 ct. -1.0% -4.2% -5.7%
RAPI 0.50 ct. -0.7% -5.6% -9.2%
RAPI 1 ct. 0.2% -8.5% -12.5%
© Copyright 2020, Rapaport USA Inc.

The diamond industry is trying to limit supply to support the market, with Indian manufacturers considering a one-month voluntary suspension of rough imports beginning May 15. Miners have paused operations or reduced production. Some mines have been placed on care and maintenance and are unlikely to resume operations at current low prices. Mid-tier miners are under pressure and unlikely to generate the cash required for their debt payments.

Global rough production in 2020 is projected to decline 16% to 119 million carats by volume and 29% to $8.5 billion by value, the lowest level since the 2009 recession, according to estimates published in the April Rapaport Research Report.

There is more than enough rough and polished in the pipeline to satisfy demand as trading centers start to reopen. Belgium and Israel have eased lockdown restrictions, while India has allowed select manufacturing in Surat and special shipments to Hong Kong.

The return to “business as usual” will be gradual. It will take some time before demand returns to levels prevalent before the pandemic. The industry has an opportunity to refresh its messaging as consumer values shift toward strengthening meaningful connections and relationships. A significant investment in marketing is necessary for the industry to capitalize on this moment and ensure long-term growth.

For in-depth diamond price, supply and demand data, subscribe to the Rapaport Research Report here.

Rapaport Media Contacts: media@diamonds.net
US: Sherri Hendricks +1-702-893-9400
International: Alex Shine +1-718-878-5138
Mumbai: Prashant Bhojani +91-97694-66855

About the Rapaport Research Report: The Rapaport Research Report provides subscribers with in-depth analysis of key themes affecting the diamond market. It also presents exclusive analytics on diamond prices for a variety of categories, based on sales and inventory data from RapNet®.

About the Rapaport RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI™): The RAPI is the average asking price in hundred $/ct. of the 10% best-priced diamonds, for each of the top 25 quality round diamonds (D-H, IF-VS2, GIA-graded, RapSpec-A3 and better) offered for sale on RapNet (www.rapnet.com). Additional information is available at www.diamonds.net.

About the Rapaport Group: The Rapaport Group is an international network of companies providing added-value services that support the development of ethical, transparent, competitive and efficient diamond and jewelry markets. Established in 1976, the group has more than 20,000 clients in over 121 countries. Group activities include Rapaport Information Services, providing the Rapaport benchmark Price List for diamonds, as well as research, analysis and news; RapNet, the world’s largest diamond trading network; Rapaport Laboratory Services, providing GIA and Rapaport gemological services in India, Israel and Belgium; and Rapaport Trading and Auction Services, the world’s largest recycler of diamonds, selling over 500,000 carats of diamonds a year. Additional information is available at www.diamonds.net.

Image: Diamantaire inspects polished diamonds (Shutterstock).
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Tags: Alrosa, China, De Beers, diamonds, Hong Kong, Jewelry, Rapaport, RAPI, RapNet
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