Diamond market overview
There were high expectations for the Hong Kong jewellery trade show earlier this month, following the Chinese New Year festivities last month when consumer spending was up 10% from the previous year’s holiday season. Although traders reported healthy traffic, the outlook for mainland China has turned slightly more cautious amid reports of sharp growth in household debt, including borrowing to fund consumer spending, property purchases and investments. Meanwhile the main polishedprices index was more or less unchanged, opening up at 118.78 on Friday, from Monday’s opening at 118.25.
Both De Beers and Alrosa announced strong sales figures for the month of February this past week, reflecting healthy demand in the dealer market. De Beers sold $555 million at its February sale, compared to $553 million during the same period last year. The leading rough supplier said rough demand was in line with expectations, following strong retail sales of diamond jewellery during the US holiday season and positive early signs for consumer demand over Chinese New Year. Alrosa sold $541.9 million in February. In a statement, the Russian state diamond company said: “In February, the core diamond markets were quite strong. The diamond cutting sector continues replenishing the stock. Demand for diamond products was also backed up by good jewellery sales in China on the eve of the Chinese New Year. Prices for diamonds in most size categories grew in January-February.” Meanwhile, in the manufacturing sector, some traders signalled the gap between rough and polished prices was widening, as rough prices were marched ahead of polished.
Corporate and events
Alrosa said it sold rough and polished diamonds worth $541.9 million in February. Rough diamond sales by value amounted to USD 532.8 million, polished diamond sales – $9.1 million, it said. In January – February 2018, ALROSA’s rough and polished diamond sales amounted to $1.046 billion. Rough diamonds were sold for USD 1.032 billion, polished diamonds – for $14.6 million, Alrosa said in a statement.
Gem Diamonds is having an extraordinary year so far as the small miner continues to find precious rocks bigger than 100 carats at its flagship Letšeng mine in Lesotho, mining.com reported. Gem recovered a 152 carat, top white colour type IIa diamond, the sixth major find so far this year, said the mining.com report.
Here’s everything you wanted to know about the Rs 12,600 crore PNB fraud and its aftermath. If the PNB scam was confounding, the spate of investigation details can be even more so. Here’s everything you wanted to know about the Rs 12,000 crore fraud and its aftermath, The Economic Times reported. A police complaint was filed by PNB (late January) against Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi for defrauding the bank of Rs 281 crore by colluding with some bank officials, said The Economic Times report. Last month, PNB revised the amount involved in the fraud to Rs 12,600 crore (around $1.9 billion), it said.