Market Comment

December 1, 2022

News: Diamond trading slow amid weak demand and declining prices. 1 ct. RAPI -3.1% in Nov. Some categories stabilizing; smalls stronger than larger certified goods. Manufacturers reducing production due to high inventory. Rough market cautious ahead of Dec. 6 De Beers sight. Retail optimistic as NRF reports record foot traffic and digital sales over Thanksgiving weekend. Adobe estimates US e-commerce +6% to $11.3B on Cyber Monday. China weak; Hong Kong improving. Christie’s withdraws emerald-cut, 13.15 ct., fancy-vivid-pink, VVS1 stone from next week’s NY auction, sells $46M (86% by lot) in HK, including necklace with 52 round, D, IF diamonds (104.84 total cts.) for $5.9M ($56,493/ct.).

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.

United States: 

Mixed sentiment. Some dealers reporting less activity than usual for this time of year. Diamonds for branded jewelry doing well. Melee market robust and seeing stable prices. Large stones above 5 ct. steady. Commercial, bread-and-butter bridal range weak. Jewelers optimistic for holidays after strong digital retail sales over Thanksgiving weekend and Cyber Monday.


Market quiet amid cautious consumer spending and low dealer sentiment across Europe. Suppliers uncertain after recent price declines. Nice fancy shapes selling well; pears, ovals and marquises difficult to find. Luxury jewelers supporting top-quality small-stone segment. Rough trading slow ahead of next week’s De Beers sight, with boxes selling at discounts on secondary market.


Polished trading sluggish. Fewer US orders than usual at the start of the holiday season. Focus on memo supply, with hope for strong sell-through during December. Dealers looking for bargains and making low offers. Buyers selective and holding out for top-quality goods. Large volumes of less-desirable diamonds available.


US demand supporting the market amid slow Far East sales. Hong Kong retailers showing renewed interest in 0.30 ct., D-F, IF-VVS, 3X (none) categories. Weak appetite for 0.50 to 0.90 ct. certified goods. Nice fancy shapes moving well. Polished production down due to excess inventory and high rough prices. Local jewelry sales steady during wedding season.

Hong Kong: 

Consumer spending improving as holidays approach and local economy rebounds. Sellers maintaining firm prices since buyers are keen to obtains goods. Stable demand for 1 to 1.50 ct., D-I, VS-SI2, VG+ diamonds. Lack of tourists limiting recovery as China continues to impose Covid-19 restrictions. Chinese retail slow due to lockdowns.