Market Comment

December 8, 2022

News: US jewelers optimistic as holiday sales gain momentum. Signet raises FY forecast after 3Q revenue +3% to $1.6B, profit -60% to $38M. Dealer trading cautious. Manufacturers under pressure to raise liquidity and reduce inventory. Small stones doing better than 1 ct.+. China slow, but some speculating that select categories have bottomed. De Beers extends sightholder contracts for a year due to market uncertainty, keeps prices stable at Dec. sight. Christie’s NY sells $59M (93% by lot), including pear, 32.62 ct., fancy-blue, potentially IF diamond for $11.8M ($373K/ct.). Sotheby’s NY sells $50M (81% by lot), with pear, 303.10 ct., fancy-brownish-yellow, IF going for $12.4M ($41K/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: 

Good business amid holiday demand, but activity and mood lower than last year. Steady memo calls seeing decent conversion to sales. Mall traffic strong, but consumers using online platforms and social media for research and buying. Fancy shapes hotter than rounds, particularly elongated cuts.


Trading quiet as dealers focus on filling last-minute US holiday orders. Buyers being selective and struggling to find the right stones at the right price. Narrowing of demand has left suppliers with large inventories of hard-to-move goods. Market soft for diamonds above 1 ct.; 0.30 to 0.50 ct., G-J, SI category has improved. Rough market cautious during De Beers sight.


Sentiment weak in the bourse. Buyers lack urgency and are prepared to wait for right deal. Many suppliers in US pushing for final holiday sales boost. Far East demand down. Chinese buyers expressing some interest in 0.30 ct. goods. High availability of diamonds above 1 ct. Rising concerns about how lab-grown diamonds will impact bridal segment.


Activity slow amid uncertain overseas demand. US orders solid during peak holiday season. China sluggish; many hope that easing of Covid-19 rules will stimulate recovery. Hong Kong seeing some movement in certified diamonds. Rough market weak amid low polished production levels. Lab-grown sales steady as discounts continue to increase, some reaching -97%/-99% below Rap List.

Hong Kong: 

Chinese government reducing quarantine measures, boosting optimism for retail ahead of Lunar New Year. Stable market for 0.30 to 0.80 ct., D-H, VVS-SI1 diamonds. Fancy shapes seeing recovery in 0.80 to 2 ct. range. Local Hong Kong business improving, but tourist spending still slow.


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