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Rapaport Weekly Market Comment

Nov 28, 2019 11:03 AM   By Rapaport News
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Positive sentiment as US jewelers complete holiday orders. Optimistic outlook for season as stock market rallies despite Trump impeachment trial and trade war. LVMH $16.2B Tiffany buyout demonstrates confidence in luxury jewelry sector. Macy’s and J.C. Penney highlight strong 3Q jewelry performance. Retailers taking more on memo, presenting good opportunity for New York dealer market. Manufacturers raising production after Diwali break amid shortages of better-quality RapSpec A3+ diamonds. Christie’s Hong Kong sells $50.6M, including important jadeite necklace for $9.4M. The Rapaport Group wishes all our friends a happy Thanksgiving and a successful holiday season.

Fancies: Some improvement in 1 ct. and larger, G-H, VS-SI fancy shapes. Pears and Ovals are the strongest shapes. High-end collection goods weak as dealers and consumers shift to lower price points. Ovals for fashion jewelry moving well in 1.50 and 2.99 ct., G-H, VS and H-K, SI2. Large Emeralds steady. Marquises and Princesses weak despite reduced manufacturing. US sustaining market for commercial-quality, medium-priced fancies under 1 ct. Chinese consumers seeking fancy shapes since prices are lower than rounds. Off-make, poorly cut fancies illiquid and hard to sell even at very deep discounts.

United States: Pockets of good demand, driven by last-minute holiday orders. A lot of diamonds out on memo, with expectations of completing sales as holiday season begins. Emphasis on multichannel strategies as retailers steer customers to stores via online promotions. Jewelers opting for designs with smaller main diamonds surrounded by melee to create a bigger look at lower price points, De Beers research shows. Steady interest in 1 to 1.50 ct., G-H, VS-SI for engagement rings.

Belgium: Dealer market stable, with rising confidence in memo sales. Steady movement of 0.30 to 1 ct., G-J, VS-SI diamonds. Focus on US and European holiday demand, but buyers have specific requirements. Retailers not making large inventory orders. Chinese market cautious; Hong Kong weak during demonstrations. Rough auctions better than a month ago.

Israel: Steady activity in the bourse, with dealers focused on selling abroad. Good market for 1.50 ct., G-H, VS2-SI2 diamonds for peak US engagement season. 0.50 to 0.70 ct. improving. Large stones above 3 ct. weak. Expectations low for Far East, even with 20 Israeli companies participating in Hong Kong International Jewelry Show (Nov. 28 to Dec. 1).

India: Polished trading relatively quiet for this time of year. Manufacturing back to normal after Diwali as suppliers prepare for orders after US holidays. Inventory levels down, supporting prices of better-quality RapSpec A3+ goods. Large volume of lower-quality diamonds still available. Rough trading stable, with some hope for further price cuts.

Hong Kong: Sentiment slightly improved as protests subside after local election. Retail and wholesale business still slow amid sharp decline in tourist arrivals. Major jewelers maintaining low inventory and shifting better goods to mainland stores ahead of upcoming Chinese New Year. Mainland sellers optimistic for trade-war deal. Steady demand for 1 ct., D-L, VS-SI diamonds.
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