Diamond market overview
Overall polished demand is holding up well. Although, the market for large stones has softened in recent weeks, traders said. Traders are generally more optimistic, partly driven by positive news from the main US market about consumer spending. The National Retail Federation (NRF) predicts that US holiday retail sales in November and December will increase between 3.6% and 4% from last year. Americans reportedly spent a record $5 billion on Black Friday and $6.59 billion on Cyber Monday last month, representing only a fraction of spending during the holiday shopping season. In the broader market, the main polishedprices index ended the week higher, opening at 116.03 on Friday, from Monday’s opening at 115.28.
Rough trading activity in the secondary market has slowed ahead of the end of year holidays. “There is end of year fatigue in rough, no real demand,” said one trader in Antwerp. Most in the trade expect a healthy rebound in rough buying in the New Year, as the overhang in polished inventory has come down. However, liquidity remains tight.
Corporate and events
Diamond giant De Beers is investing in a new digital platform service that provides a single, immutable record tracing a diamond’s individual journey through the value chain, miningweekly.com reported. This diamond traceability platform is underpinned by blockchain technology, which allows for a highly secure digital register that creates a tamper-proof and permanent record of interactions, such as a diamond’s path through the value chain, said the miningweekly.com report.
De Beers Group announced three changes to its Executive Committee. Neil Ventura, currently Executive Vice-President, Auction Sales, will become Executive Vice-President, Strategy and Innovation. Paul Rowley, currently Executive Vice-President, Global Sightholder Sales, will become Executive Vice-President, Diamond Trading. Alessandra Berridge, currently Lead Legal Counsel for M&A at Anglo American, will become Executive Vice-President, Commercial and Partnerships.
ABN AMRO announced that Geert van Reisen has been appointed interim Global Head of Diamond & Jewellery Clients with effect from 1 December 2017. Geert van Reisen takes over from Erik Jens who has decided to pursue his career outside the bank, ABN AMRO said in a statement. The Dutch Bank’s Diamond & Jewellery Clients (D&JC) will become part of Trade & Commodity Finance (TCF) within ABN AMRO’s Commercial & Institutional Banking business, it said.