Market Comment

September 21, 2023

News: Hong Kong show slow. Chinese buyers cautious in weak economy. Indian attendance low due to festivals and market slump. G7 mulls ban on Russian diamonds. US sanctions Grib. Indian trade nervous as Ukraine govt. agency names SRK as “war sponsor”; company denies claim. Alrosa cancels Sep. and Oct. sales to ease oversupply. De Beers keeps rough prices steady at Sep. sight, with secondary-market buyers bidding -20% on some boxes. Petra FY revenue -42% to $325M, loss of $102M vs. profit of $88M last year. Mastercard predicts holiday jewelry sales -0.3%. Rapaport offices will be closed on Monday, Sep. 25, for the Yom Kippur holiday. Rapaport “Trade Warning” webinar to be released next week.

Fancies: Market slower than before. Prices falling, but less sharply than for rounds. Longer Ovals, Pears, Radiants and Cushions bringing higher prices than shorter stones. Goods with medium and short ratios weak. Prices of square Cushions falling amid low demand and high inventories. Marquise prices holding up following drop in supply. 0.30 ct. doing well. Orders low for 0.70 to 1.20 ct. diamonds. VS-SI losing strength, except in 1.20 to 1.49 ct. Well-cut stones seeing shortages. Excellent shapes commanding premiums. Retailers offering broader product ranges as consumers seek alternative cuts. Oversizes trading at higher prices than usual. Off-make, poorly cut fancies illiquid and hard to sell.

United States: 

Overall market weak amid slowdown in middle-class spending. High end is a bright spot. Fancy shapes and melee seeing some demand. Expectations for late surge in holiday sales. US polished imports down 23% to $1.46 billion in July.


Sentiment very low. Serious concerns for coming months. 0.50 and 1 ct. diamonds especially weak due to sluggish US orders. Many hope holiday activity will kickstart trading. Uncertainty surrounds Russian diamonds as fresh sanctions loom.


Bourse quiet during Jewish holiday period. Low Israeli attendance at Hong Kong show. Buyers on the fence as market crisis continues. Concerns about high rough prices remain.


Activity down due to religious holidays. Sales weak. Slow Chinese demand impacting market, with downbeat reports from Hong Kong show. Prices falling as manufacturers offload goods to raise liquidity and reduce inventory risks. Domestic jewelry sector is pocket of strength amid decrease in overseas orders. Competition from synthetics intensifying.

Hong Kong: 

Traffic and trading very slow at Jewellery & Gem World fair. Chinese buyers only making deals at deep discounts. Many concerned that prices will drop further. Mainland jewelers have high inventories and weak sales. Colored gemstones moving better than diamonds as consumers seek lower-budget jewelry.


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