Market Comment

January 5, 2023

News: Happy New Year. Diamond markets quiet and sentiment cautious due to seasonal lull and general uncertainty. Polished prices continue to decline. 1 ct. RAPI -1.5% in Dec. and -10.7% in 2022, but 0.30 ct. RAPI +1.2% in Dec. after sharp decline in supply during the year. Midstream ended 2022 with high inventory. Manufacturers maintaining low polished production, cutting prices to offload less-popular goods and to raise liquidity. Sightholders hoping De Beers will reduce rough prices at Jan. 16 sight to stimulate demand and ease manufacturing profit concerns. Muted expectations for Jan. 22 Chinese New Year. Israel Dec. polished exports -39% to $161M, rough imports -33% to $142M.

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: 

Polished trading slow during short week of New Year and with many extending their vacations. General satisfaction with memo sales while dealers wait for returns. Older inventory purchased at higher prices is proving difficult to move. 1.30 to 3 ct. fancy shapes doing well amid shortages and prolific use in holiday collections. Jewelers starting to prepare for Valentine’s Day.


Antwerp market quiet with dealers on New Year break. Bourses to reopen on Monday, January 9.


Activity low. Dealers looking for customers as key markets in the US and Europe remain on vacation. December exports saw sharp drop from same month of 2021 due to uncertain US demand and the slowdown in the Far East. Overall sentiment weak; many expect difficult few months ahead. Buyers struggling to find profitable products as prices continue to decline.


Local traders and manufacturers supporting business; international demand seasonally slow. US quiet during holiday period. China has yet to recover from Covid-19 outbreak. Stable orders for 0.30 to 0.99 ct., D-H, IF-VVS2, 3X diamonds. Melee steady. Polished production low. Domestic jewelry sluggish due to high gold prices.

Hong Kong: 

Drop in mainland demand has reduced wholesale activity in Hong Kong. China focused on low-budget items containing smaller, cheaper stones. Hong Kong jewelers more optimistic ahead of Chinese New Year. Steady memo interest in 1 to 1.50 ct., D-H, VS-SI2, 3X goods. Engagement ring segment driving business; high-end luxury weaker.


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