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US Polished Imports Rise in May

Jul 23, 2018 7:25 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... US polished-diamond imports increased 7% year on year in May, a peak month for the trade due to preparations for the annual Las Vegas shows in early June. Shipments were still lower than the same month in 2013, 2014 and 2016, and slightly higher than May 2015, according to government data (see graph below).

$ Millions unless stated otherwise May 2018 Year-on-year change
Polished imports 3,042 7%
Polished exports 1,453 13%
Net polished imports 1,589 2%
Rough imports 54 -61%
Rough exports 52 69%
Net rough imports 2 -98%
Net diamond account 1,591 -5%
Polished imports: volume (thousand carats) 1,219 1%
Average price of polished imports ($/carat) 2,495 5%
  Jan-May 2018 Year-on-year change
Polished imports 10,204 6%
Polished exports 7,904 13%
Net polished imports 2,300 -12%
Rough imports 293 -21%
Rough exports 256 -8%
Net rough imports 38 -59%
Net diamond account 2,338 -14%

Source: US Census Bureau; Rapaport archives

About the data: The US, the world’s largest diamond retail market, is a net importer of polished. As such, net polished imports — representing polished imports minus polished exports — will usually be a positive number. Net rough imports — calculated as rough imports minus rough exports — will also generally be in surplus. The nation has no operational diamond mines but has a manufacturing sector, so normally ships more rough in than out. The net diamond account is total rough and polished imports minus total exports. It is the US’s diamond trade balance, and shows the added value the nation creates by importing — and ultimately consuming — diamonds.

Image: Tupungato/Shutterstock
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Tags: Average Price, imports, JCK, JCK Las Vegas, las vegas, Las Vegas shows, net diamond account, net polished imports, Net rough imports, polished exports, polished imports, Rapaport News, rough exports, rough imports
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