DIAMOND sales following De Beers’ fourth sight came in at $550m, representing a $28m improvement on sales recorded for the same sight in the previous financial year. De Beers, in which Anglo American has an 85% stake, said the numbers reflected “strong demand for jewellery”.
“In the fourth sales cycle of the year we saw robust demand for De Beers’ rough diamonds, reflecting continued strong demand for diamond jewellery, especially from American consumers as we head towards the important JCK Las Vegas trade show at the start of June, said Bruce Cleaver, CEO of De Beers, in a company statement.
Sales in the previous sight – referred to as the third cycle – totalled $524m.
RBC Capital Markets said in a report earlier this year that a decision by De Beers to limit diamond sales would be supportive of the market in the long-term. “The diamond market appears to be on the cusp of a recovery,” it said citing De Beers production downgrade from 2019 to 2020 which will bring an estimated two to four million carats of diamonds out of the market, equal to 2.5% of the global market. This should help bolster prices.
“We expect diamond prices to recover 4.5% in the 2018 calendar year and a further 3.4% in the 2019 financial year as prices begin the shift back towards tigher markets,” it said.