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Rapaport Weekly Market Comment

Jun 23, 2022 10:00 AM   By Rapaport News
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News: Optimism for US market as Las Vegas shows demonstrate robust demand despite inflation concerns. China slowdown weighing on 0.30 ct. goods. Trading seasonally quiet. Excess inventory of less desirable goods; prices declining due to low demand. Russian rough entering supply chain and may disrupt market balance. Alrosa reportedly maintaining production plan of 34M to 35M cts. for 2022. De Beers June sales +36% to $650M. TSL warns of China slump after FY sales +5% to $353M, profit of $2M vs. loss of $6M. Sotheby’s NY sells $52M, with pear-shape, 101.41 ct., D, IF Juno diamond going for $13M ($127,832/ct.). Edward Asscher extends term as WDC president to 2023.

Fancies: Market stable. Supply shortages of well-cut fancies supporting prices. 1.20 to 3.99 ct., F-J, VS-SI is hottest category. Oval is leading shape, followed by Radiant, Emerald, Pear, Cushion and Marquise. Retailers offering broader product ranges as consumers seek alternative cuts. Growing interest in fancy-shape engagement rings. Oversizes trading at higher prices than usual. Excellent shapes commanding premiums. Off-make, poorly cut fancies illiquid and difficult to sell.

United States: Dealers struggling to replenish goods following upbeat JCK. Retailers made inventory purchases at show. Industry expecting seasonal lull during summer. Solid demand for 1 to 3 ct., G-J, VS-SI diamonds. Interest in synthetics growing. Concerns rising about Russian stones entering supply chain.

Belgium: Favorable reports from JCK Las Vegas. Exhibitors were happy to be at show following two years of limited events. Stable dealer trading. Good movement of diamonds under 1 carat, but buyers have specific requirements. Well-cut stones in short supply; lack of rough on secondary market.

Israel: Trading cautious amid global slowdown. Buyers making careful purchases as market direction remains hard to predict. US demand strong, but inflation denting consumer sentiment. Some worry that positive Las Vegas shows indicated peak in activity. Orders for 0.30-carat goods weak due to sluggish sales in China even after lockdowns.

India: Steady US sales supporting activity. Las Vegas fair attendees saw solid business but uncertain whether clients will make substantial follow-up orders. Softness in China creating concerns; lockdowns have impacted spending. Strong demand for 0.70 ct. and larger diamonds in round and fancy shapes. Lab-grown moving well.

Hong Kong: Sentiment low amid China slump. Mainland border closures hampering tourist arrivals and general commerce even though Hong Kong businesses have reopened. Jewellery & Gem Asia show mainly attracted local retailers; exhibitors reported sluggish sales. Stable dealer demand for 0.30 to 0.80 ct., D-I, VS2-SI2, 3X diamonds. 1 to 2 ct. stones weaker. 
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