News: Jewelers optimistic ahead of Thanksgiving weekend. Top retailers combining e-commerce and improved in-store experience. US online sales flat at $64.6B for Nov. 1 to 21, Adobe says. Mall-based stores discounting to compete with Black Friday online promotions. Strong memo demand stimulating dealer market. Manufacturers cautious amid high polished inventory. Synthetics growing, but prices continue to slide. China weak as pandemic lockdowns continue. Chow Tai Fook FY1H sales +5% to $5.9B, profit -8% to $434M. US Sep. polished imports +18% to $1.7B, exports +24% to $1.4B. The Rapaport Group wishes all our friends a happy Thanksgiving and a successful holiday season.
Fancies: Fashion driving demand for elongated Ovals, Emeralds and Radiants. Goods with medium and short ratios are weak and declining in value. Slow market for 0.30 to 1.20 ct. diamonds. 1.25 ct. and larger, F-J, VS-SI categories stable. Supply shortages of well-cut fancies supporting prices. Oval is leading shape, followed by Radiant, Emerald, Pear, Cushion and Marquise. Retailers offering broader product ranges as consumers seek alternative cuts. Excellent shapes commanding premiums. Oversizes trading at higher prices than usual. Off-make, poorly cut fancies illiquid and difficult to sell.
Mood improving as holiday sales gain momentum. Retailers focused on enhancing multi-channel platforms. 1 to 3 ct., G-I, SI2-I2 center stones selling well due to seasonally strong bridal segment. Fashion diamond jewelry also robust, driven by high-end. Large fancy shapes in F-H, VS-SI categories are hot. Jewelers wary of overstocking amid economic uncertainty.
Market quiet. Steady US orders compensating for China slowdown. European buyers restrained due to dollar’s strength against the euro. Nice 1 ct., F, SI2 goods (3X, none) in demand and hard to find. Fancy shapes in same category also selling well. Rough trading sluggish.
Dealers cautious as prices continue downtrend. Selling difficult even as US jewelers make last-minute orders. Some traders traveling to US to make final sales pitch during holiday season. Buyers sense opportunity to push for higher discounts; suppliers defending margins due to high primary rough prices. Buzz about lab-grown, which has seen rising demand but declining value.
Activity low due to weak Chinese demand and tapering US holiday orders. High end supporting the trade. Steady interest in round, 1 ct., D-G, IF-VVS (3X, none) diamonds. Factories operating well below capacity as manufacturers seek to reduce excessive polished inventory. Minimal rough buying. Domestic jewelry sector robust during wedding season.
Local jewelry sales improving since recent easing of government Covid-19 measures. Lack of tourist traffic is still limiting recovery. Retailers preparing inventory for Lunar New Year (January 22) but cautious about buying in downward-trending market. China retail slow as pandemic-related lockdowns continue to impact consumer spending. Major jewelers seeing declines, with weakness in mainland outweighing growth in Hong Kong.