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Týždenný prehľad zaujímavostí vo svete diamantov .

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Týždenný prehľad zaujímavostí vo svete diamantov .

..............................TAK DAVAJ........................ ;)
... Som tu deň a noc ...
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Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, December 26, 2008

News: Initial estimates indicate U.S. holiday retail jewelry sales off
by about 10% with online jewelry demand down 17%. Big Box retailers
slash prices 50% to 70% to attract shoppers and clear diamond and
jewelry inventories. Liquidity has become more important than profits
as deep discounters take customers away from regularly priced stores.
Post holiday fashion jewelry demand expected to be extremely price
sensitive. Engagement ring and special occasion demand should do
better. Japan Nov. retail sales -6% to $7.2 bil., and jewelry and
watch sales -17%. China Nov. retail sales +21% to $143 bil.
Manufacturers in Israel face deep liquidity crunch forcing closures,
layoffs and return of goods. India reopens 70% of cutting centers with
rough imports to resume at end of month. Indian gem and jewelry 4Q
holiday exports to U.S. and E.U. -25%. Theo Fennell 1H08 sales -20% to
$15 mil. with loss of $845K. Petra Diamonds 1H08 production +422% to
529k cts due to purchase of new mines.



Did you predict the financial crisis?
On September 8, the Rapaport Conference did.

See and hear what the experts had to say.

Speakers and Diamond-Specific Topics include:
Rajiv Mehta: Dimexon/Eurostar - Globalization
Victor Van der Kwast: ABN Amro - Banking
Rahul Kadakia: Christie's - Big Stone Boom
Gerald Celente: World Economy
Martin Rapaport: Diamond Markets of the Future
Ralph Destino: Chairman GIA - Branding
Neil Goldberg: CEO Zale - Retailing
Mark Moeller: President AGS - Are Bread & Butter Goods Toast?
James Shigley: GIA Research - Treatments and Synthetics

Order now - $100 plus shipping

Email: IDC@Diamonds.Net
Telephone: +1-702-893-9400


Please check our events page to view
upcoming Rapaport events and show locations.


“I was looking for a decent 1ct, G-VS2, GIA certified, last week, but
most of my providers wanted between $5,300 to $5,700 per carat for the
stone. I found I could buy it from Blue Nile for anywhere from
$4,700/ct and up with GIA cert. The diamond dealers and the industry
have actually destroyed the traditional jewelry business by putting so
many stones online cheaper than what they sell to stores. Profit
margin is low, prices keep going up despite lower sales, diamond
brokers or companies keep asking a premium for GIA certified stones
over EGL or other certifications from us retailers, while Blue Nile
and others provide GIA certs below our cost to public and then they
give 1.5% +/- discount for wire transfer.”

---Homayoun Moshiri
Charlotte and Tipit, Kansas City


---U.S. Weekly Chain Store Sales -1%

Chain store retail sales in the U.S. fell 0.6 percent compared with
one year ago for the week ending December 20, 2008, according to the
International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs.
ICSC Research expects monthly comparable-store sales will be down 1
percent or slightly more for December. Chain store sales were up 2.6
percent compared with the previous week.

---Online Holiday Retail Sales -1%; Jewelry & Watches -17%

Online retail sales fell 1 percent to $24.029 billion in the period
between November 1 -- the start of the holiday shopping season -- and
December 19, online research company comScore found. The company
reported that sales so far in December rose 1 percent to $12.849
billion compared with the first 19 days of the month in 2007, as
consumers this year delayed spending. Online sales of jewelry and
watches dropped 17 percent in December, making it the third-worst
performer among the tracked categories.

---70% of Surat's Polishing Firms Open After Extended Closures

Seventy percent of Surat’s diamond units were reopened this week after
being closed for nearly two months. Remaining units are expected to
reopen by January 1, 2009. Units had reduced their working hours or
shut down altogether because of the ban on rough diamond imports by
the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council. Fears had risen that the
extended vacation in the Surat diamond manufacturing industry would
lead to large scale retrenchments of workers there.

---India's Gem & Jewelry Christmas Orders Slump

India's gem and jewelry exports are facing the heat of the economic
meltdown in the U.S. and Europe, as Christmas orders are down by 15 to
25 percent this year. "Christmas sales are down 15 to 25 percent as
the major market, the U.S., is reeling under the financial crisis,"
Mehul Choksi, Gitanjali Group chairman and managing director, said,
adding that this trend is likely to continue for the next full year.

---Israeli Diamond Manufacturer Zvi Or Closes

Israel-based diamond manufacturer Zvi Or has closed its operations
after more than three decades in business, becoming one of the Israel
Diamond Exchange's (IDE) first major casualties of the global
recession. The company allegedly owes creditors $3.5 million after
reportedly become overexposed in a failed real-estate investment.

---Africa Reels As Economic Crisis Hits Mines

The global financial crisis and nose-diving commodity prices have
dealt a major blow to mining-based African economies. Analysts say the
economic downturn and its impact on commodity prices pose a possible
disaster for resource-rich countries that have failed to diversify
beyond the mineral wealth that fills government coffers. Mining
companies are scaling back operations, resulting in retrenchments
across southern Africa, while others are implementing emergency
measures such as extended periods of leave to prevent further loss of

---UN Extends Mandate of Panel to Assess Liberia’s Kimberley Process

The UN Security Council passed a resolution extending the mandate of
the panel of experts appointed to oversee Liberia’s compliance with
the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme. The council also renewed
the arms embargo on Liberia and the travel ban on individuals who "had
threatened the peace there" for another 12 months.

---Rapaport Broadcast News

In this week’s broadcast, industry leaders in Israel and the Bank of
Israel attempt to help struggling dealers in Ramat Gan. The New York
Diamond dealers Club plan to review voter records and "waiver of dues”
following the by-laws change vote. New diamond jewelry designs were on
display courtesy of Platinum Guild International


---JCPenney to Reduce Prices 50% on Entire Stock of Diamond Jewelry

J.C.Penney announced its after-Christmas sale, which the retailer
contends will be its largest sale to date. Stores will open at 5:30
a.m. on December 26 and will be offering a 50 percent sale on
gemstones and cultured pearls, 40 percent off already-reduced
clearance prices on fine jewelry and watches, 70 percent off gold and
fine sterling silver jewelry, and 50 percent off JCPenney's entire
stock of moissanite. The retailer also plans to reduce its entire
stock of diamond jewelry 50 percent.

---Consumer Confidence Remains Near Record Low

The December Reuters/University of Michigan survey of consumer
sentiment came in at 60.1 points -- almost five points higher than
November's reading, but down from 75.5 in December 2007. The slightly
better consumer mood was attributed to a softening of retail prices.
Mounting job losses and a general worsening of personal finances kept
the mood somber overall. In other surveys for December, the monthly
Ipsos RBC Cash Index, which measures personal finances and how
comfortable consumers are with making major purchases, slipped 77
percent from one year ago to 15.3 points.

---NRF Asks for National Tax Holidays in 2009 to Boost Retail Sales

The National Retail Federation (NRF) asked President-elect Barack
Obama for a series of national sales-tax holidays to help rebuild
consumer confidence and spending. NRF proposed that tax holidays be
held for 10-day periods in March, July and October 2009. Tax-free
status would apply to all tangible goods subject to a state sales tax,
from apparel and home furnishings to restaurant dining and
automobiles, but excluding tobacco and alcohol. NRF estimates that
consumers could save nearly $20 billion.

---Theo Fennell 1H Sales Slump 20%

Luxury jeweler Theo Fennell reported sales fell 20 percent to GBP 10.2
million ($15.09 million) in the six months ending September 30, 2008.
The company posted a net loss of GBP 571,387 ($844,972), compared with
profits of GBP 295,314 ($436,661) in the first fiscal half of 2007,
due in part to a heavy expansion program into Dublin and other
international markets.

---China's Nov. Retail Sales +21%

China's retail sales grew 20.8 percent year-on-year in November to CNY
979.1 billion ($143 billion), the National Bureau of Statistics
reported. This figure, the main gauge for private consumer spending in
the world's fourth-largest economy, was down from 22.0 percent growth
in October and 23.2 percent in September.

---Japan's Dept. Store Sales Fall in Nov.

Same-store sales at Japanese department stores fell year-on-year in
November for the ninth straight month. In November, sales fell 6.4
percent from a year before on a same-store basis, the Japan Department
Stores Association said. Overall, sales at 280 stores run by 91 firms
totaled JPY 649.127 billion ($7.228 billion). Sales of mainstay
categories such as jewelry and fine art dropped 15.9 percent.

---JJS 2008 Affected By Economic Slowdown

The Jaipur Jewelry Show 2008(JJS), which concluded on December 23, saw
a perceptible drop in foot traffic and purchases compared to previous
years. The 358 exhibitors from all over India, Thailand, Hong Kong,
the U.S. and Dubai estimated that traffic was down 25 to 50 percent
from last year. Segments that did well were studded jewelry, kundan,
fusion jewelry (gold and silver combined). There was a lukewarm
response for very high end loose diamonds and high quality precious


---Madoff Must Turn Over List of Assets Including Jewelry Before Dec.

Bernard Madoff, the Wall Street investor who confessed to a $50
billion Ponzi scheme, was ordered to provide a written list of all
assets, including jewelry, artwork, cars and real estate, by December
31, 2008. The request was one step in the process of finding what is
left to repay Madoff’s wronged investors. The order places control of
these assets in the hands of a court-appointed receiver.

---Two Retail Brand Heavyweights Join Blue Nile Board

Ned Mansour, the former president of Mattel, and Leslie Lane, general
manager of Nike's global running group, have joined Blue Nile's board
of directors. Joanna Strober resigned from the board, having served as
director since Blue Nile's launch in May 1999. Mansour retired from
Mattel in March 2000 after 22 years with the company. He currently
serves on the board of homebuilder Ryland Group. Lane was appointed to
his current post at Nike to lead a consumer focus on running. He
joined Nike in 2003.


---Israel Diamond Exchange Acts to Help Members

The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) has implemented a number of measures
to help its members weather the current economic climate. IDE
president Avi Paz said that IDE membership fees would be cut by 50
percent in the first six months of 2009 for members in crisis. The IDE
plans to lower the requisite maintenance fee by about 10 percent for
the whole of next year and has eased the conditions for companies to
have sales permits reissued as well as the payment requirements for
conditional membership of the bourse.

IDE also increased its budget to help members in debt who have legal
claims against other members that prevent them from meeting their
obligations. Subsequently, Paz appealed to members of the exchange to
disclose to the IDE all private settlement of debt. Paz reported
several incidents whereby diamond companies reached a private
arrangement in which they could return goods in lieu of making the
necessary payments, rather than doing so in a collective manner
through the appropriate exchange bodies.

---IDL Opens in Italy

Dubai-based International Diamond Laboratories (IDL) opened a diamond
and diamond jewelry grading laboratory in Valenza, which will serve
customers in Italy and other parts of Europe. IDL CEO, Peter Meeus,
said the company’s certificates were already being used by retailers
in the European market, and IDL's presence there would help enhance
its service to these jewelers.

---U.S. Customs Seize More than $1M in Stones at JFK

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Customs and Border
Protection at JFK International Airport seized diamonds worth more
than $1.2 million from a 54-year old U.S. citizen. Authorities found
two sets of diamond earrings and a 20.39 carat emerald cut yellow
diamond concealed in the pocket of the man who failed to produce a
customs certificate for the stones.

---Responsible Jewellery Council Takes New Name, Launches New Logo

The Council for Responsible Jewellery has changed its name to the
Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) and adopted a new logo. The
changes coincide with the release of the council’s implementation
documents for its new certification system which RJC hopes will ensure
ethical and social standards in the diamond and gold jewelry industry.
Under the system, RJC outlines a code of practices required across the
supply chain from mining to retail, provides accreditation and
verification by auditors, and grants certification to members based on
the auditors' recommendations.


---Socialite and hotel heiress Paris Hilton was robbed at one of her
homes in Los Angeles. Local media reported that the burglar swiped $2
million dollars worth of jewelry and other valuables.

---Police in Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania, identified an
alleged jewelry thief and filed a criminal complaint against him for
stealing a $300,000 diamond ring from Milanj Diamonds on November 30.

---Police in Southfield, Michigan, arrested five men in a plot to
kidnap, rob, and kill a local jeweler and his family. Police were
tipped-off to the plan allowing the family to go into hiding while
police investigated.

---Christopher Diamonds in Chandler, Arizona, reopened after having
been the scene of a brutal robbery attempt on December 20. Store owner
Rusty Uptain was shot in the face during a struggle with the robbers.
Police identified the gunman as Kevin William Murray, 46.

---Police in Salinas, California, reported two men robbed the Don
Roberto's Jewelry store during which employees were ordered to lie on
the floor. Police said a "large amount of jewelry" was stolen before
the two men fled the scene.

---Connecticut State police are investigating an armed robbery outside
a jewelry store in which troopers responding to the scene found three
victims duct taped and piled into a pickup truck in the rear of the
Gold & Diamond Exchange. The three were customers going to a jewelry
store but preliminary information indicates that the suspects did not
enter the store and the only items taken had been in the possession of
the victims.


---De Beers Mining Operations to Extend Christmas Break

De Beers has put most of its global mining operations on hold for a
month beginning in mid-December, as the company takes an extended
vacation due to the slump in demand for rough diamonds. Tom Tweedy,
spokesperson for De Beers Consolidated Mines (DBCM), said that the
company doubled its Christmas break in South Africa by suspending
operations from December 15 until January 12.

---Petra Diamonds Rev. -2% in 1H, Slashes Exploration Plans 80%

Petra Diamonds reported that production for the first half of its
fiscal year rose 422 percent to 528,636 carats. The company sold
368,296 carats, a 218 percent increase over the same period in 2007,
but the group's revenue fell 2 percent to $31.1 million. Petra plans
to reduce its 2009 exploration budget by 80 percent to $5 million, by
pulling out of the Alto Cuilo project in Angola and reducing its
activity in Botswana and Sierra Leone.

---ALROSA Strikes Diamond Ore at Mir Ahead of Schedule

ALROSA has struck diamond ore ahead of schedule during construction of
an underground mine at its Mir diamond pipe. ALROSA had not expected
to reach the ore-body until May 2009. The first stage of the Mir mine
has a capacity of 150,000 metric tons (165,347 tons) of ore per year
and is due to be commissioned on July 15, 2009.

---Rio Tinto Claims Record Price for Argyle Diamond

Rio Tinto Diamonds said that it has received a record price for a pink
diamond mined at its Argyle mine in Western Australia. The company did
not disclose who bought the diamond or the price the stone fetched,
revealing only that it sold above the reserve price. The stone, named
“Aphrodite” after the Greek goddess of love, is a 1.01-carat, round
purplish-red diamond.

---Diamcor Agrees to Buy De Beers Alluvial Diamond Project

Diamcor Mining has signed a definitive agreement to acquire the
Krone-Endora alluvial diamond deposit from De Beers Consolidated mines
for ZAR 14 million ($1.44 million, or CAD 1.82 million). The deposit
is located in Limpopo Province in South Africa and consists of
prospecting rights over the Krone 104 and Endora 66 farms, which are
next to the De Beers Venetia Diamond Mine. De Beers had completed
extensive exploration work on the alluvial flows from Venetia but the
project did not fit De Beers' current strategic focus.

---Gemfields' FY Loss Grows in 2008

Gemfields Resources reported no revenue for its fiscal year 2008 that
ended on June 30, in contrast to the company's $1.8 million in revenue
one year earlier. Mining and production costs fell 48 percent to $3.02
million for the fiscal year. Additional operating income, however,
rose almost 300 percent to $739,000. Gemfields reported a loss of
$30.2 million for the fiscal year, from a loss of $7.3 million one
year ago.

---Diamond Fields Suspends Namibia Marine Operations

Diamond Fields International Ltd (DFI) has suspended the operations of
its mining vessel DF Discoverer off the coast of Namibia until further
notice. “The Board of Directors made this decision based on the
severity of the global economic downturn and the sudden drop in the
price of rough diamonds,” the company's statement explained.


Dec 24 Dec 18 Chng

$1 = Euro 0.714 0.680 0.034
$1 = Rupee 47.8 46.9 0.9
$1 = Israel Shekel 3.88 3.72 0.16
$1 = Rand 9.75 9.67 0.08
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.22 1.18 0.04

Gold $847.80 $852.70 -$4.90
Platinum $865.00 $853.00 $12.00
Registrovaný uživatel
zase som prerobil 8)
... Som tu deň a noc ...
Historické pohľadnice, dobové dokumenty a predmety z mesta Sereď
Registrovaný uživatel
to vieš hospodárska kríza. :twisted:
Registrovaný uživatel
uz som myslel ze ti prestalo bit srdce. 4 slova si pisal 18 minut :D
... Som tu deň a noc ...
Historické pohľadnice, dobové dokumenty a predmety z mesta Sereď
Registrovaný uživatel
:shock: :shock: neviem, musím ťa sklamať ešte žijem. :lol:
Registrovaný uživatel
Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, January 23, 2009
News: Retail sales remain weak. Bridal/engagement ring sector providing only consistent source of demand as it supports under the carat cert market at deep discounts. Chinese New Year provides limited action with price sensitive Asians moving to SI goods. NY JA show poor. DTC Jan. sight estimated at under $100 mil. U.S. Dec. jewelry consumer price index +8%. Leviev No 1. 2008 Israeli polished exporter at $417 mil. (-20%). Belgium Dec. rough imports -70% to $242 mil. and polished exports -22% to $689 mil. Sierra Leone 2008 rough exports -31% to $98 mil. (371,285cts. -17%). Richemont 3Q total sales -7% to $2 bil. and jewelry sales -7% to $1 bil. BHP 2Q production -30% to 594,000 cts.

Martin Rapaport Video: New Year Market Analysis
Addresses key initiatives facing diamond dealers in 2009



Did you predict the financial crisis?
On September 8, the Rapaport Conference did.

Speakers and Diamond-Specific Topics include:
Rajiv Mehta: Dimexon/Eurostar - Globalization
Victor Van der Kwast: ABN Amro - Banking
Rahul Kadakia: Christie's - Big Stone Boom
Gerald Celente: World Economy
Martin Rapaport: Diamond Markets of the Future
Ralph Destino: Chairman GIA - Branding
Neil Goldberg: CEO Zale - Retailing
Mark Moeller: President AGS - Are Bread & Butter Goods Toast?
James Shigley: GIA Research - Treatments and Synthetics

Order now - $100 plus shipping
Email: Telephone: +1-702-893-9400


Please check our events page to view upcoming Rapaport events and show locations.


"The world could hardly be more different [now]. I’m not going to spell out the difficulties that face us and the industry....What I can say, and not by way of cheering you up I’m afraid, is that our preliminary view of Christmas sales in the U.S. is that they underperformed expectations. We do not have a precise read but the percentage decline year on year is likely to fall somewhere between 15 and 20 percent, leaving the decline for the U.S. market as a whole for the year in the high single digits. While a glimmer of good news is that the number of pieces sold may in fact not have declined, the need to move those items means that retailers’ margins have suffered and they are not in a position to replenish stock as strongly."

---Varda Shine, managing director of DTC, at London sightholder cocktail party


U.S. Jewelry CPI +8% in Dec.

The consumer price index (CPI) for jewelry in the U.S. rose 7.5 percent year on year during the month of December to 156.07 points. The rate was more than one point higher than November's index. For the watch and jewelry categories combined, the index for December was up 6.9 percent to 148.86 points.

Israel's Top 25: Leviev Ranks No.1 Despite 20% Drop in Diamond Exports

Lev Leviev Diamonds (LLD Diamonds) was again Israel’s largest exporter of polished diamonds in 2008, despite a 20 percent decline in the company’s exports. According to Israel’s Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor, LLD Diamonds exported $417 million worth of polished diamonds in 2008, compared with $522 million in 2007

Bank of America Sues Christian Bernard for $1M,
Hearts on Fire Opposes Sale of Goods

Bank of America is suing jeweler Christian Bernard for $1 million in connection with a loan granted in July 2003. BOA claims that after Christian Bernard filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy in December, it defaulted on a loan agreement. Christian Bernard Diffusion, a Paris subsidiary of Christian Bernard, was granted the loan through LaSalle Retail Finance, which is now part of BOA. Diamond brand Hearts on Fire also filed a petition with a U.S. Bankruptcy Court contending that diamonds consigned on memo to Christian Bernard must be returned, rather than being sold in a going-out-of-business sale to pay the retailer's bank debt.

South Africa's Acting State Diamond Trader Shows Goods to Clients

South Africa’s State Diamond Trader (SDT) is in the process of showing goods to clients even as the country’s mining houses have curtailed production due to the slump in demand for rough diamonds. Futhi Zikalala, acting chief executive officer (CEO) of the SDT, said that while the trader has presented the goods to the smaller cutting and polishing operations in South Africa, it remains to be seen at what level the organization will sell goods in January.

Rapaport Broadcast News

In this week’s broadcast, look for a wrap-up of the JA NY show and see how diamonds made their statement at the White House inaugural festivities.


Belgium Dec. Imports/Exports

Dec. Chng. YTD Chng.
$mil 2007 $mil 2007
Polished Exports $633 -26% $14,480 10%
Polished Imports $470 -15% $7,492 58%
Net $194 -44% $6,987 -17%

Rough Imports $86 -91% $9,244 2%
Rough Exports $24 -43% $794 39%
Net $61 -94% $8,450 0%

Net Diamond Acct. $132 ($1,462)

China's Diamond Imports +22% in 2008

China's Shanghai Diamond Exchange (SDE) trade increased 30.5 percent year-on-year to $1.307 billion in 2008. Diamond imports and exports increased 29.1 percent from the previous year to $1.174 billion -- including imports of $535 million, up 21.7 percent. Bonded trades among members of the SDE amounted to $100 million in 2008, up 78.6 percent from 2007.

South Africa's Nov. Diamond Production -27%

South Africa’s diamond production fell 27.4 percent in November 2008 compared with one year earlier, according to a preliminary report by Statistics South Africa on the country’s mineral production for the month.

Sierra Leone 2008 Diamond Exports -31% to $98M

Sierra Leone reported that its exports of diamonds, a major source of revenue for the West African nation, dropped by 31 percent in 2008, mainly due to industrial strikes. Total diamond exports for 2008 were valued at nearly $98 million from the sale of 371,285 carats, compared with $141.5 million for 448,928 carats in 2007.


Japan's Dec. Department Store Sales -9%

Japan’s department store sales fell 9.4 percent to JPY 794.7 billion ($8.76 billion) in December from one year ago. The drop was the steepest sales dip the country has recorded since March 1998, when sales fell 20.8 percent. For the full year 2008, department store sales in Japan shrank by 4.3 percent to JPY 7.38 trillion ($81.45 billion).

Richemont 3Q Sales -7%

Luxury retailer Richemont reported a 7 percent drop in group sales during the three months ending December 31, 2008, and offered a bleak outlook for future performance. The company registered declines in each of its main product categories as total sales for the period fell to EUR 1.552 billion ($2.06 billion). Jewelry sales fell 7 percent to EUR 800 million ($1.062 billion). Sales were weakest in the Americas, where Richemont reported a 24 percent decline.

Theo Fennell Holiday Sales -21%

Theo Fennell reported that 2008 holiday sales fell 21 percent on a same-store basis due to poor performance in its U.K. home base. The luxury retailer previously reported a similar sales decline for its first fiscal half, with sales down 20 percent to GBP 10.2 million ($15.09 million) for the six months ending September 30, 2008.

Saks to Cut 1,100 Jobs

Saks Incorporated announced it will slash 1,100 jobs, or 9 percent of its workforce, as part of a major cost-cutting strategy that the retailer has adopted to weather the weak economic environment. The cuts will apply to corporate and in-store positions, and most will take effect by January 30, 2009.

Sterling Jewelers Cuts 114 Jobs on Sales Slowdown

Sterling Jewelers cut 114 employees from the workforce. The job cuts amounted to slightly more than 5 percent of the company's 2,200 local employees. Most of the laid-off workers worked in the company's headquarters in Akron, Ohio.

Birks & Mayors to Close One Store in Atlanta

Jewelry retailer Birks & Mayors will close its Mayors location in the Perimeter Mall in Atlanta, Georgia, on January 25, 2009. The store closure will affect five employees. The retailer reported that companywide sales fell 31 percent to $66 million for the period from November 2 to December 27, 2008, and same-store sales dropped 26 percent. In the U.S., same-store sales saw a 31 percent decrease, and they declined 19 percent in stores across Canada.

JCPenney Clarifies 'Unfounded' Market Concerns About its Credit Facility

Retailer JCPenney released a statement in order to dispel "unfounded concerns" regarding its revolving credit facility. A spokesperson for the company said, "JCPenney has one of the strongest balance sheets in the retail industry and a cash position that is more than sufficient for all of our needs. Given this, there is no basis for any concern about our credit facility." JCPenney reported that it expects to have more than $2 billion cash on its balance sheet at the end of its fiscal year 2008, which ends January 31, 2009.

Japan-Based Jeweler Miki Goes Bust

Jeweler Miki Corporation filed for bankruptcy protection with liabilities estimated at JPY 11.7 billion ($130.2 million), due to slumping sales at its stores throughout Japan. The company, known for Jewelry Maki and other nationwide jewelry shop chains, had tried to restructure under the burden of heavy debts accompanying the development of a large number of shops. In the period from January to August 2008, however, sales plunged to JPY 20.5 billion ($228.1 million).

Analyst Cuts Blue Nile Amid Falling Prices, Weak Consumer Demand

Lower prices for polished diamonds and higher demand for smaller gemstones amid rising unemployment caused an analyst to cut his price target on online jeweler Blue Nile Inc. Matt Nemer, a Thomas Weisel Partners analyst, lowered his target to $17 from $26, implying that the stock may decline 15 percent from Wednesday's closing price of $20.03. Nemer expects polished diamond prices to decline because of shrinking demand worldwide for diamonds. Polished diamond prices have slipped 3.6 percent so far in January, Nemer said.

Damas Opens Ninth Store in Dubai Mall

Dubai-based jewelry and watch retailer Damas International Limited opened its ninth store in the Dubai Mall. The new store, Damas Italia, opened on January 10, and will house Italian brands such as IOSI, Porrati and Nouvelle Bague.


De Beers Marketing Strategist Lamb to Leave

David Lamb, chief strategic officer of De Beers’ marketing unit, Forevermark, will be leaving De Beers at the end of this month. Lamb led and managed Forevermark's product strategy and creative design since its inception in 2007. Lamb previously served as global business director at branding company JWT, where he handled the De Beers account and helped create some of De Beers’ legendary campaigns including the "Past, Present, Future" three-stone ring campaign.

Zale's CFO Leaves, Gordon Assumes the Role

Zale CFO Rodney Carter, has left the company, and has been replaced by Cindy Gordon until a replacement is found. Gordon will also continue to serve in her current role as company controller.

Paragon Lake Hires David Hill as VP of Sales

David Hill has joined Paragon Lake as the company’s new vice president of sales. Hill will be responsible for increasing sales and building up the in-house sales team.


Pres. Bush Uses Authority to Alter Burmese JADE Act

In his last week in office, President George W. Bush waived some of the provisions in the Tom Lantos Block Burmese JADE Act against Myanmar. The bill was signed into law in July 2008 and was intended to prevent rubies and jade from Myanmar from entering the U.S., whether directly or through third-party countries. Bush waived the right of the government to freeze the assets of anyone who might be found trading in Burmese jewels but is not yet known to the government, or who hadn’t begun to trade in such goods at the time the bill was passed.

Robbers Steal $1M in Goods from Alberta Diamond Exchange

Calgary police say three masked thieves held a jeweler and his son, and the son's friends, hostage at their home before forcing the jeweler to open his store so the robbers could take diamonds and jewelry. Police estimate the stolen goods from Alberta Diamond Exchange amounted to $1 million. Police are still searching for three suspects.

GIA India to Launch First Courses in Jaipur in February

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA), in association with the Indian Institute of Gems and Jewellery (IIGJ), plans to offer two gemological courses in Jaipur. GIA India will host the two weeklong classes.

Webcast to Discuss Lessons Learned from Shane Bankruptcy

Panorama Consulting Group will host a free webcast on enterprise resource planning (ERP) software on January 29, for 60 minutes beginning at 11 a.m. Eastern Time. The consulting group noted in particular that costs associated with an ERP solution were cited as a contributing factor in jewelery retailer Shane Co.'s recent bankruptcy case. Panorama will address realistic cost expectations for ERP, the risks and rewards of installing such a solution, and will provide guidance on software options for small and mid-sized businesses.


BHP Billiton Diamond Production -30% in 2Q

BHP Billiton reported that its diamond production for the quarter ending December 31, 2008, fell 30 percent to 594,000 carats. The company explained that the year-to-year decline was primarily due to lower grades and an expected change in the mix of ore as its Ekati mine in Canada transitions from open-pit to underground mining.

De Beers Freezes Expenditures, Plans Job Cuts in South Africa

De Beers is planning a sweeping reduction of its 3,500 employee workforce in South Africa in response to weak diamond demand. The company plans to cut 1,415 positions, of which about 400 are currently vacant. The move is part of its plan to freeze all nonessential capital expenditures for the year.

Cullinan Mine to Meet 2009 Production Targets

The Cullinan mine, operated by Petra Diamonds, produced 450,129 carats in the second half of 2008, staying on track to meet its production targets for the fiscal year. The mining company expects the mine to produce 950,000 carats for the year ending June 30, 2009. Petra has no intention to cut back production at Cullinan, bucking the trend set by other mining companies in response to the slump in demand for rough diamonds.


For week ending January 22, 2009

Jan. 22 Jan. 15 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.770 0.760 0.010
$1 = Rupee 49.2 48.9 0.3
$1 = Israel Shekel 3.94 3.88 0.06
$1 = Rand 10.07 10.02 0.05
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.26 1.25 0.01

Precious Metals
Gold $856.40 $817.00 $39.40
Platinum $922.00 $919.00 $3.00

Stock Indexes Chng.
BSE 8,813.84 9,046.76 -232.92 -2.57%
Dow Jones Avg. 8,122.80 8,212.49 -89.69 -1.09%
FTSE 4,052.23 4,121.11 -68.88 -1.67%
Hang Seng 12,657.99 13,242.96 -584.97 -4.42%
S & P 500 827.50 843.74 -16.24 -1.92%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 522.96 555.71 -32.75 -5.89%

Birks & Mayors $0.50 $0.51 -$0.01 -1.96%
Blue Nile $19.17 $20.50 -$1.33 -6.49%
Charles & Colvard $0.22 $0.22 $0.00 0.00%
Collector's Universe $3.97 $2.86 $1.11 38.81%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $1.49 $1.40 $0.09 6.43%
Fuqi International $5.88 $6.25 -$0.37 -5.92%
JCPenney $17.89 $19.25 -$1.36 -7.06%
Kohl's $37.68 $37.48 $0.20 0.53%
Lazare Kaplan $3.75 $4.00 -$0.25 -6.25%
LJ International $0.69 $0.70 -$0.01 -1.43%
Macy's $9.39 $9.76 -$0.37 -3.79%
Man Sang $1.50 $1.46 $0.04 2.74%
Movado Group $7.72 $8.25 -$0.53 -6.42%
Nordstrom $13.06 $12.66 $0.40 3.16%
Saks $2.40 $3.38 -$0.98 -28.99%
Signet $7.70 $9.45 -$1.75 -18.52%
Sotheby's $7.95 $8.79 -$0.84 -9.56%
Tiffany $21.21 $22.06 -$0.85 -3.85%
Wal-Mart $48.87 $51.42 -$2.55 -4.96%
Zale $1.45 $2.93 -$1.48 -50.51%

Bulgari €3.50 €3.80 -€0.30 -7.89%
Citizen Holdings €2.49 €2.49 €0.00 0.00%
Esa €2.85 €2.95 -€0.10 -3.39%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,593.00 CHF 1,695.00 -CHF 102.00 -6.02%
LVMH €41.92 €41.00 €0.92 2.24%
Pinault P-R SA €37.73 €40.98 -€3.25 -7.93%
Richemont SA CHF 18.00 CHF 17.44 CHF 0.56 3.21%
Sakha Diamonds €0.26 €0.27 -€0.01 -3.70%
Swatch Group CHF 129.50 CHF 129.70 -CHF 0.20 -0.15%
Theo Fennell (pence) 13.00 14.00 -€1.00 -7.14%

King Fook HKD 0.35 HKD 0.39 -HKD 0.04 -10.26%
Noble Jewelry HKD 0.43 HKD 0.43 HKD 0.00 0.00%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 8.83 9.39 -0.56 -5.96%
Gitanjali Gems 50.95 56.90 -5.95 -10.46%
Rajesh Exports 24.00 22.30 1.70 7.62%
Ren. Jewellery 21.10 19.15 1.95 10.18%
Su-Raj Diamonds 22.00 23.00 -1.00 -4.35%
Titan 893.75 929.05 -35.30 -3.80%
Zodiac JRD 11.70 12.25 -0.55 -4.49%
Suashish Diamonds 164.90 178.10 -13.20 -7.41%

Michael Hill NZD 0.53 NZD 0.53 NZD 0.00 0.00%

Gems TV Holdings SGD 0.040 SGD 0.040 SGD 0.000 0.00%
Sarin Technologies SGD 0.115 SGD 0.115 SGD 0.000 0.00%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $8.93 $9.81 -$0.88 -8.97%
Archangel CAD 0.07 CAD 0.09 -CAD 0.03 -27.78%
Harry Winston CAD 4.80 CAD 4.96 -CAD 0.16 -3.23%
Mountain Province CAD 0.99 CAD 1.03 -CAD 0.04 -3.88%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.65 CAD 0.68 -CAD 0.03 -4.41%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.07 CAD 0.08 -CAD 0.01 -12.50%
Shore Gold CAD 0.35 CAD 0.33 CAD 0.02 6.06%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.12 CAD 0.13 -CAD 0.01 -7.69%
True North Gems CAD 0.09 CAD 0.10 -CAD 0.01 -10.00%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 30.0 30.3 -0.3 -1.02%
BHP Billiton 1,162.0 1,137.0 25.0 2.20%
Firestone Diamonds 20.0 19.6 0.4 2.30%
Gem Diamonds 270.8 315.0 -44.3 -14.05%
Mano River 2.8 2.9 -0.1 -4.18%
Mwana Africa 3.8 4.0 -0.2 -4.75%
Namakwa Diamonds 38.3 41.0 -2.8 -6.71%
Petra Diamonds 66.8 80.0 -13.3 -16.56%
Rio Tinto plc 1,536.0 1,401.0 135.0 9.64%

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Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, January 30, 2009
News: Total rough diamond sales to the trade plummet to mere $150 million this January as cutters run out of money. ALROSA sells all rough to Russia repository Gokhran. Tiffany’s Laurelton Diamonds closes Yellowknife cutting plant. Polished markets under continued pressure due to severe liquidity and credit concerns. Interdealer cash markets developing at 30% to 40% below memo price levels with great profit opportunities for those that have cash and buyers. Miami Antique Show attracts diamonds but few buyers. Valentine's Day sales expected to come in at -20% of last year. Chinese diamond imports up 22% in 2008. EU calls on Kimberley Process to enforce Zimbabwe compliance. Fred Myers to open 15 new stores in 2009.

Martin Rapaport Video: New Year Market Analysis
Addresses key initiatives facing diamond dealers in 2009



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Martin Rapaport: Diamond Markets of the Future
Ralph Destino: Chairman GIA - Branding
Neil Goldberg: CEO Zale - Retailing
Mark Moeller: President AGS - Are Bread & Butter Goods Toast?
James Shigley: GIA Research - Treatments and Synthetics

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“[Christmas sales] were fair. People were definitely spending less and price-shopping. Now we are negotiating stronger with our designers and diamond buyers. We are looking for better deals to bring the prices down as much as we can. We are just trying to be smarter about a lot of things."

---Jamie Bovender, owner of Oletowne Jewelers
West Manchester Township, Pennsylvania

World News

ALROSA to Sell Rough Only to Gokhran

ALROSA will stop selling rough diamonds to all of its customers with the exception of Russia’s state repositor, Gokharn. Gokhran will continue buying supplies from ALROSA to keep cash flowing for mining operations. ALROSA had previously announced it planned to reduce rough sales by 30 percent due to the shrinking demand for rough goods.

Laurelton Diamonds Closes Yellowknife Polishing Plant

Laurelton Diamonds, a subsidiary of Tiffany & Co., plans to close its diamond polishing unit in Yellowknife, Canada, as a result of high operational costs and a lack of accessible rough diamond supply. The plant closes February 19 and is expected to layoff 25 of the 38 employees who work there. Laurelton is a Diamond Trading Company sightholder that specializes in the manufacture of diamonds for sale as jewelry at Tiffany & Co.'s retail stores.

NRF Survey Predicts 14% Drop in Gift Spending for Valentine's

Total Valentine’s Day spending this year is expected to reach $14.7 billion, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF), down 13.6 percent from the organization’s estimate of $17.02 billion in 2008. Based upon Christmas jewelry retail sales, Rapaport Research forecasts that Valentine’s Day spending will fall approximately 20 percent from 2008.

The NRF expects overall retail sales to fall by 2.5 percent in the first half of 2009, and by 1.1 percent in the third quarter. However, the NRF predicted a 3.6 percent increase in fourth-quarter sales for 2009. The upswing will come "due to easy comparisons to last year as well as a strengthening economy."

EU Calls upon Kimberley Process to Ensure Zimbabwe is Compliant

The European Union (EU) called for the Kimberley Process "to take action with a view to ensure Zimbabwe's compliance with its Kimberley obligations." The EU supports action to investigate the exploitation of diamonds from the Marange/Chiadzwa area and alleged financial support of the regime and recent human rights abuses. As a result of an ongoing economic and humanitarian crises in Zimbabwe, the World Diamond Council (WDC) raised concerns this past December about the possible illegal exports of Zimbabwean diamonds.

Indian Diamond Industry May See More Defaults

The diamond industry in Surat has witnessed more than half a dozen cases of defaults involving diamond manufacturers and merchants recently, to the tune of more than $8 million. If the current trend is anything to go by, default cases are likely to soar in the next one to two months, market watchers told the Times of India.

France Slashes VAT Rate on Some High-End Jewelry Imports

The French government lowered the value added tax (VAT) on some “rare” or “high-value” jewelry imports from 19.6 percent to 5.5 percent. The move was designed to boost the appeal of Paris as an auction center for jewelry.

Rapaport Broadcast News

In this week’s broadcast, The Conference Board's latest consumer survey finds that shoppers are very pessimistic about the economy, which plays into NRF's prediction of weak retail sales for the first half. ShopNBC is working on cost-cutting measures. Israel’s activity is directed toward overseas traders.

Wholesale & Retail

Bulgari Sales -10% in 4Q08, Jewelry Revenue -13%

Bulgari sales fell 9.8 percent in the fourth quarter to EUR 312.6 million ($412.6 million); using constant exchange rates, total sales dropped 15.5 percent. Jewelry sales for the three months ending December 31, 2008, declined 12.8 percent to EUR 129.3 million ($170.7 million), and at constant exchange rates they were down 17.3 percent. Watch sales decreased 21.2 percent to EUR 72 million ($95 million), a 28 percent drop at constant exchange rates. Full-year jewelry sales fell 2.6 percent to EUR 448.2 million ($591.6 million), and dropped 1.5 percent using constant exchange rates. Watch sales declined 10.5 percent to EUR 263.8 million ($348.2 million), and total company sales were down 1.5 percent to EUR 1.075 billion ($1.42 billion). By geographic region, Bulgari experienced its steepest sales drop for the fiscal year in the Americas, where they were down 12.5 percent. Sales decreased 1.4 percent in Europe, but grew 1.6 percent across Asia and were up by 9.1 percent across the Middle East. Full-year profits for fiscal 2008 will be announced on March 11, 2009.

Swatch Watch, Jewelry Sales -6% in 2H 2008

Swatch Group's sales in the second half of 2008 fell 6.3 percent to CHF 2.853 billion ($2.469 billion), while gross watch and jewelry sales declined 5.6 percent to CHF 2.451 billion ($2.122 billion). The company did not provide separate half-year sales figures in its full-year report published Thursday. For the full year, Swatch posted a 0.5 percent rise in net sales to CHF 5.677 billion ($4.908 billion). Its watch and jewelry segment saw gross sales increase 1.8 percent for the year to CHF 4.796 billion ($4.151 billion), while at constant exchange rates sales rose 6.6 percent. Sales growth was most profound in China and the Middle East, where Swatch posted double-digit increases. Sales in Europe and the U.S. showed more modest growth, "with recession fears starting to weigh on consumer confidence in several countries and markets towards the end of 2008," the company explained.

Bijou Brigitte Same-store Sales -5%, Revenue +2%

Bijou Brigitte Modische's revenue rose 2.2 percent in 2008 to $512.8 million, mostly from an increase in new stores. Same-store sales fell 4.9 percent. Bijou Brigitte opened 95 outlets and closed 15. The jeweler reported that domestic sales were stable in Germany, but revenues declined in Spain, Portugal and France. The company will report profits in March.

Israel’s Esskay Diamonds Informs the Exchange it Owes Almost $5M

Israel’s Esskay Diamonds notified the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) that it is having difficulty settling its debts. The company reported that it owes other diamond companies $3 million and the banks a further $1.8 million. An IDE spokesperson confirmed that Esskay Diamonds has not closed, nor has it declared bankruptcy. Following the news, New York-based Esskay Gems made a point to announce that it was not affiliated with any company with a similar name.

Israeli Diamond Dealer Ady Legziel Closes

Diamond manufacturer and dealer Ady Legziel has joined the growing list of companies in the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) to close up shop. A Tel Aviv District Court has appointed a liquidator to oversee the company’s debt, which amounts to approximately $1.6 million.

Fred Meyer Plans to Open 15 Stores

Fred Meyer Jewelers plans to open 15 new stores in the U.S. this year. In addition, Littman Jewelers, Fred Meyer’s sister company, will change the name of all its Tennessee stores to Fred Meyer Jewelers when it holds two Fred Meyer grand openings in the state on February 11.

Bankruptcies +94% in '08 in O.C., Jewelry Among Vulnerable Industries in '09

Individuals and businesses that filed for liquidation or protection in Orange County, California, during the year numbered 8,983. That's a 93.8 percent increase from 2007, according to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. Most experts expect 2009 to be worse, with the most vulnerable industries being real estate, jewelry, apparel and restaurants.

UK Online Jewelry Retail Traffic Up in Dec.

Online retailers of jewelry and luxury goods saw an increase in U.K Internet traffic this past December. According to online research company comScore, traffic to jewelry and luxury goods sites grew 4.6 percent compared with a year ago, to almost 4.1 million unique visitors in December. Visitors to jewelry and luxury sites climbed 26 percent from the previous month. ComScore did not provide sales figures.

No Bids for ShopNBC, 4Q Results Disappoint

The board of directors of ShopNBC agreed to continue business as an independent entity following an extensive and unsuccessful search for a buyer. ShopNBC preliminary fourth-quarter results found that sales fell 35 percent to $142 million. The shopping network expects a net loss of $40 million, much deeper than its loss of $1 million one year ago.

Who is News

Archangel Diamond Corp. Names New Chairman

Robert Shirriff, company director of Archangel Diamond Corporation, was named chairman of the board following the resignation of former chairman of the board, Bruce Cleaver, and former director Jonathan Dickman. Tony Guthrie, a senior manager at De Beers Group Services, and Steven Thomas, chief financial officer (CFO) of De Beers Canada and CFO of Archangel, were appointed to the board as well.

A.Jaffe Appoints DeGraeve to Head Marketing, Reduces Retail Doors

Bridal jewelry manufacturer A.Jaffe appointed Evert DeGraeve as vice president of merchandising and marketing. DeGraeve will be responsible for the development of all merchandising and marketing plans at A.Jaffe. A.Jaffe also announced it would be streamlining its account base to concentrate on 300 exclusive retail partners, ending its partnerships with 100 retailers.

Fong to Resign Post at FUQI, Remain as Consultant through May

FUQI International, the jewelry designer and manufacturer based in Shenzhen, China, announced that Dexter Fong, its executive vice president of corporate development, will be resigning effective January 31, 2009. Fong will serve as a consultant to FUQI through May.

WhiteFlash Acquires

Online diamond retailer WhiteFlash acquired As part of the integration plan, WhiteFlash hired Bryan Boyne as vice president for this newly created position.

General News

Robbers Steal Diamonds from Two Dealers Visiting Oklahoma

Two dealers were robbed in Oklahoma City while putting gasoline in their rental car. Police say three robbers, who were also in a rental car, pulled up to the dealers' car, and then two of them broke the car's back windows and stole two suitcases filled with diamonds. The suspects were described as white men. The dealers had been to Tulsa and Norman on sales calls prior to their stop in Oklahoma City. Police believe the dealers were hunted and that the robbery was premeditated.

German Jewel Thieves Stage Multimillion-Euro Heist

Robbers pulled off a daring heist in Berlin, stealing jewelry reportedly worth up to EUR 5 million ($6.5 million). The raid was carried out during this past weekend at the upscale KaDeWe store. The thieves appeared to have managed past burglar alarms, as the theft was not discovered until Monday morning.

Bank of Israel Forecasts Negative Growth in 2009

The Bank of Israel expects the country to experience negative growth in 2009 due to the intensified economic slowdown in the final quarter of 2008. The bank lowered its forecast to negative 0.2 percent from its previous outlook of 1.5 percent growth.

IDL Plans Feb. Launch of Saudi Arabia Lab

Dubai-based International Diamond Laboratories (IDL) plans to launch operations in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on February 14, 2009. The new facility will mark the first time a diamond and diamond jewelry grading lab has been established in the country, according to IDL.

Diamond Mining News

DiamondCorp Nets Almost $2M from Lace Tailings Tenders

DiamondCorp reported that it sold 31,906 carats of diamonds from its Lace tailings retreatment plant in South Africa at tender during 2008 for $1.7 million, or an average $53.52 per carat. The company added, however, that it has ceased activities at the plant, as the “significant drop in prices” in the second half of the year meant it was “no longer economic” to operate.

Debswana Shareholders Argue on Bailout, Layoffs

A rift may be emerging between De Beers and Botswana over a possible bailout of Debswana. Botswana’s Sunday Standard cited unnamed "insiders" as saying that the government is prepared to recapitalize Debswana on its own in order to avoid mass layoffs. The government favors keeping Debswana’s mines operating and stockpiling inventory until the markets recover. De Beers, however, will not stockpile and has committed to scaling back production to meet lower demand from its customers.

Pangea DiamondFields Settles $2M Loan

Diamond exploration company Pangea DiamondFields repaid a $2 million loan to Pangea Exploration (Proprietary) Limited (Panex) and settled the outstanding loan from funds it raised through a successful open offer in December.

Endiama Seeking Diamond Exploration Partners in Angola

Angola’s state-owned diamond mining company, Endiama, is looking for diamond exploration partners. The company has 100 sites ready for exploration across 14 of the 18 provinces in Angola.

Payment for Stake in Tawana's Kareevlei Project Delayed

Diamond exploration company Tawana Resources claimed Agio Diamonds Investments delayed its payment for a share in Tawana's South Africa Kareevlei diamond project and issued a summons for payment in the High Court of South Africa.

Mexivada’s Prospecting License in Republic of Congo Approved

Junior mining and exploration company Mexivada's diamond prospecting permit for Camp Socobois in the Republic of Congo (ROC) was approved. The permit covers a 780 square kilometer (310 square mile) area located between the company’s Malambani concession to the north and the Bitsandou concession to the south.

WAD Plans Alluvial Diamond Mine Launch in March

West African Diamonds is on target to begin production at its Guinea-based Bomboko alluvial diamond mine in March. The project spans nine alluvial diamond licenses adjacent to Guinea’s only diamond mine, Aredor, according to John Teeling, the company's chairman.

Econ Watch

For the week ending January 28, 2009

Jan. 28 Jan. 22 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.760 0.770 -0.010
$1 = Rupee 48.9 49.2 -0.3
$1 = Israel Shekel 4.06 3.94 0.12
$1 = Rand 10.01 10.07 -0.06
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.21 1.26 -0.05

Precious Metals
Gold $906.30 $856.40 $49.90
Platinum $973.00 $922.00 $51.00

Stock Indexes Jan. 28 Jan. 22 Chng.
BSE 9,236.28 8,813.84 422.44 4.79%
Dow Jones Avg. 8,149.01 8,122.80 26.21 0.32%
FTSE 4,190.11 4,052.23 137.88 3.40%
Hang Seng 13,154.43 12,657.99 496.44 3.92%
S & P 500 845.14 827.50 17.64 2.13%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 536.81 522.96 13.85 2.65%
Registrovaný uživatel
Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, February 13, 2009
News: Slight improvement in cutting center trading activity and market sentiment. Some dealers are buying select goods from distress sellers at very low cash prices. Consumer demand for jewelry is poor but bridal demand is holding up and supporting under the carat cert market. Rio Tinto '08 diamond revenue -18% to $840 mil., earnings -51% to $137 mil. Yakutia Russia '08 rough production flat at $2.6 bil., but polished +8% to $147 mil. U.S. Dec. polished imports -25% to $967 mil. and polished exports -20% to $805 mil. Belgium Jan. polished exports -26% to $558 mil. rough imports -44% to $461 mil. Dubai '08 gold imports +21% to 743 tons, exports +29% to 409 tons. South Africa ’08 diamond production -16% to 12.7 mil. cts. De Beers launches Forevermark Precious Collection in Hong Kong.


Rapaport Fair Trade Jewelry Conference at BASELWORLD

When: March 30, from 10:30 a.m. until 13:30 p.m.
Where: Montreal Hall, Basel Congress Center

The conference is free and open to everyone,
but space is limited so reserve now!

Topics at the conference will include:
• Fair Trade Jewelry Initiatives
• What is and what is not Fair Trade Jewelry
• The role of the private sector
• What’s in a name: Charitable, Conflict Free,
Ethical, Fair Trade, Fair Made, Development Jewelry
• Sourcing and Marketing Fair Trade Jewelry

Read Martin Rapaport's latest article on the industry titled: Stall and Spin


“The industry is down 30 percent. The jewelry business has taken a big hit, because jewelry is one thing that does not have to be purchased, like food or gas. We haven't had to adjust due to the economy, though, because of the custom manufacturing. We find that people who still want custom-made jewelry and have money to, purchase that. The general run-of-the-mill jewelry has slowed down, but custom work still stays busy."

-- Todd Murray
Co-owner, Murray's Jewelers, Muncie, Indiana


U.S. Jan. Dpt. Store Sales -6%, Feb. Looks as Grim

U.S. department store sales fell 6 percent in January 2009 to $16.1 billion, according to the latest government figures. The International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) reported that chain-store sales for the week ending February 7, 2009, remained very weak as consumers continued to reduce spending. ICSC reported that sales declined 1.8 percent during the first week of February. Michael P. Niemira, ICSC's chief economist, said, “For February, ICSC Research expects same-store sales will be down by one to two percent from the same month of the prior year.”

Nedbank Sues Alleged Embezzler Peykar for $36M

Nedbank of South Africa is suing diamond distributor Peykar International in U.S. court, claiming it embezzled more than $36 million in diamonds from Fine Diamonds, a debtor of Nedbank's. Nedbank is also seeking settlement of an $11 million debt from a loan it made to Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sightholder Festdiam Cutting Works, which went into liquidation in December 2008 as a result of its connection with Fine Diamonds and Peykar’s alleged fraud.

Diamond Execs Plan First Working Meeting for Generics Campaign

Diamond sector leaders will meet February 24 in London to continue planning an industry-wide generic marketing campaign. Participants will include representatives of the major mining companies — ALROSA, De Beers, BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Harry Winston Diamond Corp. The project gained steam in 2008, after De Beers announced it would cut back on its advertising spending.

Owner of 101-Carater Names it 'The Shizuka Diamond'

The owner of the largest colorless diamond ever sold in Asia at auction has named the stone "The Shizuka Diamond." Christie’s sold the 101.27-carat, F color, VVS1 shield-shaped diamond in May 2008 for $6.2 million, or about $61,334 per carat. The buyer's name was not revealed, but Christie's reported that he purchased the diamond as a gift for his wife of 16 years. The stone was cut from a 460-carat rough into an unusual modified shield shape with 92 facets.

Rapaport Broadcast News

Trading comments and observations point to improved trading activity. Forevermark launches a new collection of fine diamond jewelry in Hong Kong. Diamond jewelry designer Donna Distefano kicks off a benefit for Women for Women International at her studio and discusses a special ensemble of jewelry she is designing for Jama Jandrokovic's upcoming concert at Carnegie Hall. Judy Olsen, Distefano's marketing director, shares the company's new strategy that led to a VIP partnership with, and customized jewelry for, the New Jersey Devils.


U.S. Dec. Imports, Exports

December $Mil Chng. YTD $Mil. Chng.
Polished Imports $967 -25% $18,994 5%
Polished Exports $805 -20% $14,300 26%
Net Imports $162 -43% $4,694 -31%

Rough Imports $29 -72% $752 -11%
Rough Exports $17 -76% $390 -21%
Net Imports $12 -61% $362 1%

Net Diamond Acct. $174 -45% $5,056 -29%

Belgium Jan. Imports, Exports

January $Mil Chng.
Polished Exports $558 -26%
Polished Imports $657 -13%
Net Exports ($98)

Rough Imports $461 -44%
Rough Exports $304 -68%
Net Imports $152

Net Diamond Acct. ($252)

South Africa's 2008 Production -16%

South Africa's diamond production fell 16.2 percent in 2008. Actual production figures were not provided in the report. Using Kimberley Process data for 2007, South Africa’s diamond production in 2008 fell to approximately 12.8 million carats.


Fortunoff Auction Feb. 23

Fortunoff notified employees of its Westbury, New York, store it may be forced to eliminate jobs and close the location if the company is unable to find investors or a buyer. Lawyers for Fortunoff have proposed the sale of all of the company's assets, and have scheduled an auction for February 23, 2009, in New York. To object to this sale, the objection must be filed in writing and served to all parties involved in the case by February 20, 2009, at 4 p.m.

Renaissance Jewellery Profits -72%, Sales +32%

Renaissance Jewellery's net profits for the fiscal third quarter ending December 31, 2008, fell 72 percent to $669,836 (INR 32.5 million). Sales grew 32 percent to $48.9 million (INR 2.4 billion) while expenses rose 38 percent to $47.2 million (INR 2.3 billion). For the first nine months of the fiscal year, Renaissance's profits dropped 38 percent to $3.4 million (INR 167.8 million) and net sales rose 20 percent to $111.9 million (INR 5.4 billion).

Collectors Universe 2Q Rev. -16%, Loss Grows to $11M

Collectors Universe's second fiscal quarter revenues fell 16 percent to $8.2 million, and the company posted a net loss of $10.9 million. Revenues from its grading, authentication and related services declined only 10 percent to $8.1 million, of which $402,000 was revenue from Collectors' jewelry-grading division, a drop of 25 percent. Product sales decreased 87 percent to $102,000.

Tiffany & Co. to Reduce Prices at Stores in Japan

Tiffany & Co. said it will cut prices for most of its products in Japan by an average of 9 percent. The cuts come on top of the price reductions, averaging 6 percent, that the company made in late November. The U.S. jewelry and silverware company will implement the reduction at all of its 57 Japanese outlets in response to slumping sales.

Michael C. Fina Adds Wedding Ring Boutique to Flagship Store

Michael C. Fina opened a wedding ring boutique at its Fifth Avenue flagship store in Manhattan. The new gallery showcases more than 1,000 rings from 25 designers, including Erica Courtney, MaeVona, Beaudry, Mark Patterson and Tacori. The Michael C. Fina store also features a working diamond cutting and polishing wheel, so that customers can "try their hand" at polishing a rough stone.

Love & Pride Adds a Diamond and Platinum Collection for a Sour Economy

Love and Pride creator and diamond jewelry designer Udi Behr launched the Revolution of Love, a new "value-driven" diamond and platinum collection. Behr said that the depressed economy has changed the game for designers and retailers. The collection uses 585 platinum — an alloy of 58.5 percent platinum and 41.5 percent cobalt — with natural clarity-enhanced diamonds. Price points for engagement rings begin at $699.

World Gold Council Survey Finds Most Women See Long-Term Value in the Metal

The results of a jewelry survey by the World Gold Council suggested that Valentine's Day is an occasion when women like to receive gold jewelry. The survey, conducted by GfK, polled 7,500 female respondents from India, China, Saudi Arabia, Italy, Turkey and the U.S. The women surveyed overwhelmingly cited gold jewelry as being "everlasting." The World Gold Council advised the industry to use these results in driving Valentine's sales by targeting men for gift purchases.

De Beers, Brides Magazine Partner on Duo Diamond Ring Launch

De Beers Diamond Jewellers debuted Duo, an interlaced diamond engagement ring and wedding band, at stores on February 10, 2009. The Duo diamond ring design incorporates what De Beers calls an "intimate twist" of two bands — tiny diamonds on a smooth platinum ring and a central round stone. Duo will be featured in the March/April issue of Brides and coincide with a contest to give away a Duo ring valued at $18,000.

Police Arrest Twins in KaDeWe Jewelry Robbery

Police arrested 27-year-old twins in connection with a Berlin jewel heist in which the robbers are believed to have snatched valuables worth $6.5 million. None of the jewelry and watches stolen from KaDeWe, Berlin's biggest department store, was recovered, but "various pieces of evidence" were found, police said.

DMIA Says Adopt Prudent, Conservative Business Practices

In a letter to the trade the Diamond Manufacutures & Importers Association of America (DMIA) urged the exercise of diligence and self-discipline in re-evaluating memo practices and, in light of current conditions, the implementation of sounder and more cautious and conservative credit practices. The DMIA and the Jewelers Board of Trade (JBT) is developing a system of comprehensive credit reporting for members of the diamond industry. A particular focus is the creation of an electronic data exchange for the reporting and disseminating of credit information relative to memo, sales and receivables. As a precursor to this system, it is critical for members of the Association to join the JBT credit interchange and to supply accurate and timely information. DMIA reminded traders to use the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) form for memo transactions.

"We must anticipate that in the coming months we will be forced to reduce the reliance on bank facilities commensurate to reduced business activity. All DMIA members should undertake a careful evaluation of all current business and credit practices. We must evaluate every customer, old and new alike, carefully and objectively." Don't rely solely on customer payment histories, resist the temptation to adopt more aggressive sales policies and more lenient credit policies. "We need to tighten our belts and refrain from practices which only serve to magnify the extent of our exposure to potential losses."


Ganz Urges Manufacturers to Maintain Balance

Moti Ganz, president of the International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA), told diamond manufacturers to balance the need to retain a viable labor force with the ability to continue serving long-term clients. "It has been our experience from previous downturns that when workers are laid off they leave the industry and will not come back when the tide turns," he said. "We suddenly live in a new world where banks face shortages of funds. The diamond industry remains attractive to the banking system, but we have to fight to keep our preferred position among many other borrowers who are seeking funding. IDMA is consulting closely with the commercial banks and we feel confident that they understand and appreciate the current situation prevailing in the industry."

Ganz added that the industry must join forces,and banks must recognize that it is the manufacturing sector that will lead the industry to stability and renewed growth. "Our members are displaying great resilience and a strong commitment to all our stakeholders. When the crisis is behind us, what will be remembered is the role played by our members in all the manufacturing countries around the world."

Paz Urges Trade Fairs to Support Traders

Avi Paz, president of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) urged international trade-fair organizers to better support the marketing efforts of firms that exhibit loose diamonds at their shows. Paz told show organizers to “go the extra mile” to subsidize the participation of diamond companies that would otherwise opt out of future trade shows due to reduced marketing budgets.

Gemfields Appoints Harebottle as CEO

Gemfields Resources appointed Ian Timothy Harebottle as its chief executive officer (CEO), effective immediately. Harebottle joined the company that became TanzaniteOne as operations director in September 2001. He was appointed CEO of TanzaniteOne in April 2005 and served in that capacity until February 2008.

Rio Tinto's New Chairman Quits

The new chairman of Rio Tinto has quit following a boardroom row over a multibillion-dollar fundraiser likely to involve one of its main customers, Chinese firm Chinalco. Jim Leng, who took up the post four weeks ago, said he had resigned because of a "difference of opinion" over how to reduce the mining group's $39 billion debt.

Esau to Chair Kimberley Process for Namibia

Bernhard Esau, Namibia's deputy mining and energy minister, was appointed by the mining minister to chair the Kimberley Process Certificate Scheme for 2009. Namibia took over as chair of the Kimberley Process in 2009. The appointment sidelined to Kennedy Hamutenya, the country's longtime diamond commissioner.


Responsible Jewellery Council Welcomes Beaverbrooks Jewelers

The Responsible Jewellery Council — the trade name of the Council for Responsible Jewellery Practices — announced its newest member, Beaverbrooks the Jewellers, bringing its total membership across the supply chain to 85. Beaverbrooks the Jewellers employs more than 700 people and has 60 stores in the U.K.

100 AGS Retailers Will be Reimbursed for Conclave Hotel Stay

The American Gem Society (AGS) plans to reimburse 100 qualified retailers for the cost of their hotel rooms during the group's upcoming Conclave, which runs April 1 to 4, 2009, at the Hyatt Regency Chicago. The first 100 AGS member retailers who apply will receive passport-style booklets which must be signed by six vendors during the Supplier Showcase, held on April 1 and 2, and then submitted to AGS after the Conclave along with their hotel bills for reimbursement.


Stephen Lussier's Presentation at the Mining Indaba 2009

Stephen Lussier, executive director of De Beers, delivered the keynote address at the Mining Indaba in Cape Town on February 10, 2009. In his speech, Lussier outlined the bold actions that De Beers has taken to weather the current global economic downturn. Read Lussier’s presentation:

Angola’s Catoca Mine to Reduce Production

The Catoca mine in Angola is scaling back production in 2009 due to the drop in demand for rough diamonds. The move follows earlier reports that the mine’s largest foreign shareholder, ALROSA, will stop exploration work at the site until the end of the year. Catoca is 32.8 percent owned by ALROSA, and is responsible for about 70 percent of Angola’s total production.

Firestone Suspends Operations at Bonte Koe

Firestone Diamonds suspended operations at its Bonte Koe plant on the Buffels River in South Africa, after De Beers Consolidated Mines terminated its toll treatment joint-venture agreement with Firestone. De Beers cited a decrease in revenue from diamonds recovered and an increase in mining costs as its reasons for discontinuing the agreement.

DiamondCorp Granted Mining Right For Lace Mine

DiamondCorp was granted the mining right to the Lace diamond mine in South Africa for more than 20 years. DiamondCorp owns a 74 percent stake in the Lace mine and, together with its two Black Economic Empowerment partners, Shanduka Resources and Sphere Investments, has been redeveloping the site.

Tahera Applies for Suspension of Shares

Tahera Diamond Corporation has applied for the voluntary suspension of trading of its shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX). The embattled mining company stressed that any plan for restructuring or liquidation would not result in any return for Tahera shareholders, and therefore the stock should be suspended from trading “for the time being.”

Namdeb Secures Overdraft Protection

Namibia has provided a $32.9 million (NAD 325 million) security to Namdeb to renew its $65.9 million (NAD 650 million) revolving overdraft facility with local banks. Namibia and De Beers each holds a 50 percent share in Namdeb. It is still in discussion with the banks, but Namdeb reported that some have already approved the of the company's overdraft.


Week ending February 12, 2009

Feb.5 Feb.5 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.780 0.776 0.004
$1 = Rupee 48.9 48.8 0.1
$1 = Israel Shekel 4.05 4.05 0.00
$1 = Rand 9.99 9.83 0.16
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.24 1.23 0.01

Precious Metals
Gold $945.50 $914.90 $30.60
Platinum $1,074.00 $974.00 $100.00

Stock Indexes Feb.5 Feb.5 Chng.
BSE 9,465.83 9,090.88 374.95 4.12%
Dow Jones Avg. 7,923.76 8,063.07 -139.31 -1.73%
FTSE 4,202.24 4,228.93 -26.69 -0.63%
Hang Seng 13,228.30 13,178.90 49.40 0.37%
S & P 500 835.19 845.85 -10.66 -1.26%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 518.08 540.97 -22.89 -4.23%

Birks & Mayors $0.24 $0.33 -$0.09 -27.27%
Blue Nile $23.00 $23.12 -$0.12 -0.52%
Charles & Colvard $0.40 $0.34 $0.06 17.65%
Collector's Universe $3.68 $3.77 -$0.09 -2.39%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $1.43 $1.61 -$0.18 -11.18%
Fuqi International $4.61 $4.78 -$0.17 -3.56%
JCPenney $15.81 $15.07 $0.74 4.91%
Kohl's $36.54 $38.20 -$1.66 -4.35%
Lazare Kaplan $3.65 $3.58 $0.07 1.96%
LJ International $0.58 $0.70 -$0.12 -17.14%
Macy's $8.71 $8.75 -$0.04 -0.46%
Man Sang $1.50 $1.57 -$0.07 -4.46%
Movado Group $7.28 $7.87 -$0.59 -7.50%
Nordstrom $13.77 $13.05 $0.72 5.52%
Saks $1.95 $2.40 -$0.45 -18.75%
Signet $7.99 $6.27 $1.72 27.43%
Sotheby's $8.73 $8.46 $0.27 3.19%
Tiffany $20.57 $21.74 -$1.17 -5.38%
Wal-Mart $48.13 $48.56 -$0.43 -0.89%
Zale $1.40 $1.37 $0.03 2.19%

Bulgari €3.36 €3.24 €0.12 3.70%
Bijou Brigitte €80.50 €78.24 €2.26 2.89%
Esa €2.99 €3.15 -€0.16 -5.08%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,550.00 CHF 1,574.00 -CHF 24.00 -1.52%
LVMH €48.14 €44.80 €3.34 7.46%
Pinault P-R SA €42.28 €41.31 €0.97 2.35%
Richemont SA CHF 17.96 CHF 17.70 CHF 0.26 1.47%
Swatch Group CHF 17.96 CHF 135.70 -CHF 117.74 -86.76%
Theo Fennell (pence) 12.00 12.40 -€0.40 -3.23%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 8.77 8.24 0.53 6.43%
Gitanjali Gems 50.70 45.50 5.20 11.43%
Rajesh Exports 25.10 24.00 1.10 4.58%
Ren. Jewellery 21.25 20.60 0.65 3.16%
Su-Raj Diamonds 22.70 20.85 1.85 8.87%
Titan 853.45 784.60 68.85 8.78%
Zodiac JRD 10.30 10.40 -0.10 -0.96%
Suashish Diamonds 133.00 135.00 -2.00 -1.48%

Michael Hill NZD 0.52 NZD 0.53 -NZD 0.01 -1.89%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $9.62 $10.30 -$0.68 -6.60%
Archangel CAD 0.08 CAD 0.09 -CAD 0.01 -11.11%
Harry Winston CAD 4.53 CAD 4.88 -CAD 0.35 -7.17%
Mountain Province CAD 1.05 CAD 1.00 CAD 0.05 5.00%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.57 CAD 0.59 -CAD 0.02 -3.39%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.07 CAD 0.07 CAD 0.00 0.00%
Shore Gold CAD 0.32 CAD 0.30 CAD 0.02 6.67%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.12 CAD 0.13 -CAD 0.01 -7.69%
True North Gems CAD 0.10 CAD 0.10 CAD 0.00 0.00%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 27.0 30.4 -3.4 -11.04%
BHP Billiton 1,276.0 1,285.0 -9.0 -0.70%
Firestone Diamonds 15.3 14.4 0.9 6.34%
Gem Diamonds 211.8 215.0 -3.2 -1.51%
Mano River 2.8 2.3 0.5 21.74%
Mwana Africa 3.8 4.0 -0.2 -6.02%
Namakwa Diamonds 28.0
Registrovaný uživatel
Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, February 20, 2009
News: Market conditions remain slow despite U.S. Valentine’s Day. Independent retailers discounting heavily as consumers restrict purchases to bargain prices. Blue Nile 4Q sales -23% to $86 mil. and profits -53% to $3.5 mil. GIA reduces U.S. workforce by 9% and cuts management salaries up to 20%. KPS Capital Partners to buy Lenox pending bankruptcy court approval. Christie's 2008 jewelry sales -3% to $384 mil. Israel Jan. polished diamond exports -59% to $306 mil. and total diamond imports -77% to $142 mil. India Jan. rough imports -76% to $217 mil. and polished diamond exports -41% to $761 mil. China's Jan. jewelry sales +29%. Suashish Diamonds 3Q sales -59% to $30 mil. with net loss of $6 mil. Big box retailer PPR 2008 sales +6% to $26 bil. and profits flat at $1.2 bil.


Martin Rapaport “State of the Diamond Industry”
BASELWORLD Watch and Jewellery Show

When: March 30
Presentation 1: 8:00-10:00
Presentation 2: 14:00-16:00
Where: Basel Congress Center, Montreal Hall

To reserve a space email

Rapaport Fair Trade Jewelry Conference at BASELWORLD

When: March 30, from 10:30 until 13:30
Where: Montreal Hall, Basel Congress Center

The conference is free and open to everyone,
but space is limited so reserve now!

Topics at the conference will include:
• Fair Trade Jewelry Initiatives
• What is and what is not Fair Trade Jewelry
• The role of the private sector
• What’s in a name: Charitable, Conflict Free,
Ethical, Fair Trade, Fair Made, Development Jewelry
• Sourcing and Marketing Fair Trade Jewelry


"Nationally, 80 percent of jewelers are down, but I'm fine. We did more sales than last Christmas, but people spent less. We had to work a lot harder to make the money. We'll put the buckle back on your kid's watch, and you go out the door happy. It makes us a little recession-proof. Everything from soup to nuts. We can go from pencil drawings to finished sketches. It's going to be a leaner year, but we're swamped with work right now."

---Goldsmith Kurt Brazeau
Murduff's Jewelry, Florence, Massachusetts


India's 4Q Gold Demand +84%

Gold demand in India increased by 84 percent during the fourth quarter of 2008, on the back of a 107 percent jump in jewelry consumption, according to the World Gold Council. In its report on gold-demand trends, the group said that global demand was up by 26 percent to $26.5 billion, and that investment demand rose 182 percent. Demand for gold was mixed in the U.S., however, as jewelry demand dropped 35 percent, but buying of gold bars and coins grew 370 percent.

China’s Jan. Jewelry Sales +29%

China’s retail jewelry sales grew 29 percent in January 2009 compared with one year ago. Across all sales categories, the 1,000 major Chinese retailers surveyed for the report saw their sales rise 25 percent during the month. Jewelry was among the strongest growth categories in January, along with food, which grew 29 percent, and cigarettes and alcohol, up 47 percent.

Japan's Jan. Jewelry Sales -19%

Japan's department store sales fell 9.1 percent year-on-year to $6.6 billion in January. It was the 11th consecutive monthly drop in department store sales and the steepest drop ever for the month of January. Sluggish sales of clothing, down 12 percent, and of expensive items such as jewelry, decreasing 19 percent, were a key factor in the department store sales plunge.

Reserve Bank of India Relaxes Terms for Diamond Dollar Accounts

In order to help the troubled diamond industry, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) relaxed the provisions for opening the dollar accounts that are used by diamond exporters for importing rough stones. RBI has delegated the powers of opening such accounts, called diamond dollar accounts (DDA), to permitted authorized dealers, a change from the current practice of granting the accounts on a case-by-case basis.

India's Fiscal Budget Extends 2% Finance Credit Another Six Months

The interim budget for fiscal year 2009-2010, presented to India's Parliament, extended the period of financing for exporters by six months, through September 2009. The interest subsidy of 2 percent on pre- and post-shipment credit applies to gems and jewelry.

Thailand's Gemstone Industry Faces Slowdown

Thailand's diamond and gemstone trade projects a 20 to 30 percent drop in demand for stones from Thailand during 2009. The biggest drop in demand so far has been from the U.S., with a 20 percent decline, followed by Europe, with a 15 percent drop. Asian markets are more resilient, with consumers in Japan consuming 10 percent fewer diamonds; only India and China may experience increases in demand.

Consumers, Economists Fear Deeper Pain to Come for U.S.

The Reuters/University of Michigan consumer survey registered a preliminary February consumer confidence index of 56.2 points, five points lower than January's. Consumer expectations for the future of the economy registered their lowest reading since May 1980, at 49.1 points. In a separate report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, economists surveyed said they expect a severe economic contraction during the first half, followed by gradual improvement in the fourth quarter and into early 2010.

Rapaport Broadcast News

Zales brings cheers and happy tears to Times Square, with one lucky couple winning a $22,000 Celebration Diamond ring. Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sightholder Stuller shows retailers how its new electronic tools help sell diamonds at the counter. Harry Winston gives us a sneak peak of new inspirational jewelry pieces that you can watch for on the red carpet at the 81st Annual Academy Awards in Los Angeles on February 22, 2009.


Belgium Imports / Exports Jan. 2009 Chng.
Polished Exports $558 -39%
Polished Imports $656 -38%
Net Exports ($98) 35%

Rough Imports $461 -56%
Rough Exports $304 -70%
Net Import $156 482%

Net Diamond Acct. ($254) -42%

India Imports / Exports Jan. 2009 Chng.
Polished Exports $761 -41%
Polished Imports $482 -8%
Net Export $279 -64%

Rough Imports $217 -76%
Rough Exports $59 32%
Net Import $158 -81%

Net Diamond Acct. $121


PPR 2008 Sales +6%, Profits Flat

Big-box retailer PPR reported a 5.8 percent increase in sales during 2008 to $25.7 billion (EUR 20.2 billion) and that its profits were basically flat at $1.2 billion (EUR 924 million). The Paris-based PPR reported that its international sales grew during the year to represent 61 percent of total revenues, and that online sales rose 10 percent during the year.

Blue Nile 4Q Sales -23%, FY08 Sales -8% with Profits -34%

Blue Nile's fourth-quarter sales fell 23 percent to $85.8 million. Net income dropped 53 percent to $3.5 million. Blue Nile's full-fiscal-year sales decreased 8 percent to $295.3 million, and net income for 2008 was down 34 percent to $11.6 million. Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the fiscal year stood at $54.5 million.

Suashish Diamonds 3Q Sales -59%, Registers Loss

Suashish Diamonds' net sales from operations fell 59 percent in the second fiscal quarter ending December 31, 2008, to $29.6 million (INR 1.4 billion). The diamond manufacturer and jeweler recorded a net loss of $6.3 million (INR 304.3 million) for the period, after posting a profit of $6 million (INR 290.9 million) one year ago.

U.S. Online Jan. Jewelry Sales -15%

Online jewelry sales in the U.S. fell 15 percent in January, according to comScore's latest figures. Of 14 categories comScore regularly measures for sales, jewelry was fourth from the bottom inching out office supplies which dropped 20 percent. Sales of sports and fitness items rose 42 percent --the best performing category-- and the worst performer was computer software with a sales drop of 58 percent. Overall online spending rose 2 percent during the month to $10.9 billion.

Jewelmak Seeks Return of Merchandise from Fortunoff

Jewelmak filed a complaint in U.S. Bankruptcy Court against Fortunoff, which is currently in Chapter 11 protection. Jewelmak is seeking return of its merchandise and an injunction against any sale of its merchandise in Fortunoff's possession. Jewelmak told the court that its agreement with Fortunoff was specifically for supplying goods to Lord & Taylor stores. In response, Fortunoff stated that this specification was not explicitly stated. Fortunoff further argued that it would not be cost-effective to track down the merchandise in question, as some products are already in 11 Lord & Taylor stores and some are being held, among goods from many other jewelry suppliers, at a Fortunoff's facility in Uniondale, New York.

Fortunoff Lays off 300, Faces Lawsuit

Fortunoff has dramatically scaled down its corporate operations, laying off about 300 of its corporate staff and triggering a class-action lawsuit by some of the laid-off workers. Affected workers said they were not given severance packages, and several criticized the company's handling of the cuts as chaotic and confusing, with little information provided about options for health care.

NovaGem Forces R. Meyers Jewelers into Bankruptcy

Mountain Brook, Alabama, retailer R. Myers Jewelers has been thrown into involuntary bankruptcy by NovaGem of New York. NovaGem cited an unpaid balance for goods in documents filed with U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Birmingham, Alabama. NovaGem said in its bankruptcy filing that R. Myers owes it $138,000. A creditor can force a company into bankruptcy if it is owed more than $10,000.

Lenox Finds a Buyer

The Lenox brand was bought at auction by a newly formed subsidiary of KPS Capital Partners. KPS stated that it will fund the purchase and liquidity needs of Lenox without outside financing. The auction and sale are subject to final approval by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. Lenox filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in New York in December 2008.

Omega Diamonds Suspected of Multibillion-Euro Fraud

Police in Belgium are investigating an alleged multibillion-Euro fraud involving Omega Diamonds. Representatives from the company purportedly earned billions of Euros by buying diamonds on the black market in Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). They then traded the stones to companies in Dubai, Tel Aviv and Geneva. The full extent of the scheme is not yet known, and police are still seeking conclusive evidence in the case.

Buffett Buys $250M of Tiffany Debt

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway agreed to buy $250 million of debt from Tiffany, in the form of bond. The bonds will yield 10 percent a year, with half the debt scheduled to mature in 2017 and the remainder two years later. Tiffany said it would use the funds to “refinance existing indebtedness and for general corporate purposes.”

Gitanjali, Gemapi to Establish Polishing Plant in Brazil

The Gitanjali Group, in partnership with Brazil-based Gema do Piauí Mineraç&atilde;o (Gemapi), will establish Brazil's first diamond polishing plant in the town of Cabo de Santo Agostinho in the state of Pernambuco. The investment amounts to $9.7 million. The new plant will employ 1,500 local workers, who will be trained by Indian specialists. The plant will have the capacity to polish up to 150,000 carats per month.

Tanishq Launches Luxury Diamond Jewelry Stores

Tanishq, a subsidiary of Titan Industries, has launched a new high-end diamond jewelry retail chain to complement its range of watch and jewelry lines. The new store, called Zoya, is the result of a strategic decision by Tanishq to offer "a premium and differential experience in the luxury jewelry space."

Bazaarvoice Adds Ratings, Reviews Function to

Online diamond retailer added the Bazaarvoice social commerce platform to its website, enabling customers to rate and comment on products.

Gemfields Launches Kagem Emerald Collection

In its ongoing effort to increase market share across the gemstone world, Gemfields Resources launched an emerald jewelry collection using traceable emeralds from the Kagem mine in Zambia. Gemfields recently established a cutting and polishing facility in Jaipur, India, to produce the stones. The company holds an exclusive 15-year license to use the Fabergé brand name for colored gemstones.

Online Diamond Firms in China Sign Consumer Protection Pact

The Gems and Jewelry Trade Association of China (GAC) published a self-regulation pact for the domestic online diamond trade in an attempt to protect consumer rights. The pact, dubbed "The Self-Discipline Pact for China's e-Trade on Jewelry (Diamond)," was jointly formed by the GAC and nine major online jewelry companies. In 2008, China's online diamond trade stood at $146 million, and the figure is expected to double in 2009, according to the GAC.


Rio Tinto Appoints Cox to Diamond Post

Rio Tinto appointed Bruce Cox as managing director of Rio Tinto Diamonds. Cox will be based in London and will be responsible for all of Rio Tinto's diamond mining operations, which include the Argyle mine in Australia, the Diavik mine in Canada, the Murowa mine in Zimbabwe and the Bunder project in India. He will also head Rio Tinto's Antwerp-based sales and marketing activities.

De Beers Diamond Jewellers Promotes Belkadi to U.S. CEO

De Beers Diamond Jewellers named Hamida Belkadi as its chief executive officer (CEO) for the U.S. Belkadi joined De Beers in March 2005 and has been instrumental in the establishment of De Beers retail jewelry stores in the U.S. She has been leading the company's U.S. operations as chief operating officer (COO) since July 1, 2007.

Luxury Retail Expert Danziger to Deliver Keynote at Atlanta Jewelry Show

The Atlanta Jewelry Show, which runs February 28 through March 2, 2009, at the Cobb Galleria Center, will feature keynote speaker Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing. Danziger will discuss how current trends are transforming the market for luxury goods in general, and how independent jewelers can use those trends to transform the shopping experience in their stores.


GIA Announces Further Workforce-Reduction Measures

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) carried out a second resource action this week, following an 11 percent workforce reduction in December 2008. GIA notified 103 employees, or 9 percent of its workforce in the U.S., that their jobs have been cut. Those affected were given 60 days of paid leave, and will get two week severance and an additional week of pay for every completed year of service. GIA will provide career counseling services to those employees. Additionally, all GIA management took up to a 20 percent reduction in salary, and those on hourly schedules will experience a 20 percent reduction in their work hours.

New Fund Projects Investment Opportunity in Colored Diamonds

Codiam Fund, which invests in high-end polished colored diamonds, reported a 9 percent increase in its net asset value in the three months of operation since it launched in September. The fund only buys colored diamonds larger than 1 carat, in the top colors, including red, intense purple, intense green, purple red, purplish-red, bluish-green, greenish-blue, pink, blue, orange and yellow.

Istanbul to Host CIBJO Congress 2009 in May

The World Jewellery Confederation (CIBJO) will host its 2009 congress in Istanbul, Turkey, from May 3 to 5 at the Çirağan Palace Kempinski on the banks of the Bosporus. CIBJO plans to roll out its World Jewellery Confederation Education Foundation (WJCEF) at the event. WJCEF is a body created by CIBJO in cooperation with the UN to create and deliver training programs on the principles and practices of corporate social responsibility (CSR) for all sectors of the jewelry industry.

Myanmar Opens New Gemstone Museum

Myanmar's largest gemstone museum opened to the public on February 12, 2009. The museum is three stories tall and houses some of the nation's most famous gemstones, jade, pearls and jewelry. Items on display include a natural pearl that reportedly weighs 845 carats, and a ruby said to weigh 21,450 carats. If the ruby is in fact that size, it would supplant the record currently held by the 125West Ruby, certified by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) at 18,696 carats.

Georgia Border Police Detain Two on Diamond, Gold Smuggling Charge

Shalva Kamushadze and Mirian Gamqrelidze were detained at the Sarpi customs terminal, on the Turkish border with Georgia, on charges of smuggling over 9 kilograms (19.8 pounds) of gold, 8 kilograms (17.6 pounds) of silver and some diamonds from Turkey into Georgia. The total value of the smuggled precious metals exceeds $597,000. If the charges are proven, the detainees will be sentenced to 5 to 7 years in prison.

AGS Labs Introduces Light Performance Report for Royal Asscher Cut

AGS Laboratories will introduce a Light Performance Diamond Quality Report for the Royal Asscher Cut diamond in the U.S. AGS has performed extensive research on the proprietary diamond in order to determine a grading system for it based on AGS's Light Performance Cut Grade methodology. The Royal Asscher Cut is protected by a worldwide patent. Royal Asscher’s own laboratory in Amsterdam grades each diamond, and laser-inscribes each with the company logo and an individual identification number before sending it to AGS.

Responsible Jewellery Council Joins Global Compact

The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) formally became a participant in the UN Global Compact. The Council promised to publicly advocate for the Global Compact and its principles, and to report annually on the progress it has made in implementing those principles among its members.

Gubelin Gem Lab Schedules Off-Premise Testing for Hong Kong Show

The Gübelin Gem Lab reminded clients that it would offer an off-premise testing facility in Hong Kong in connection with the Hong Kong March Show, which runs March 4 to 8, 2009. Gubelin Gem Lab will run testing services March 3 to 9, from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. It asks those interested in its services to arrange an appointment ahead of time.


Jindal Steel & Power to Invest $20M in Diamond Mining

Jindal Steel and Power will invest up to $20 million in the next 12 months in diamond mining in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The Navin Jindal-led firm, with primary interests in the steel and power sector, also said it would start mining iron ore from its mines in Bolivia in the second half of the year.

Petra Acquires 75% Stake in Tanzania's Williamson Mine

Petra Diamonds has acquired a 75 percent stake in the Williamson diamond mine in Tanzania from Cheviot Holdings Limited, a subsidiary of De Beers. Petra agreed to buy the stake in September 2008, funding the deal from its internal cash resources. Tanzania's government will retain its 25 percent stake in the mine.

Firestone, ADP to Build Tailings Plant

Firestone Diamonds and ADP Projects were named by Debswana as the preferred bidders to build a tailings retreatment plant at the Jwaneng mine in Botswana. Firestone will finance and operate the plant, while ADP will be responsible for the plant’s design and construction. Firestone expects the contract negotiations with Debswana to be concluded and signed in the third quarter of 2009.

Peregrine Diamonds Doubles Prospecting Rights Coverage at Baffin Island

Peregrine Diamonds was granted approval for 86 new prospecting permits, totaling 3.2 million acres, bordering the junior mining company's Chidliak project on Baffin Island. Peregrine discovered three diamond-bearing kimberlites at Chidliak in 2008, and already has a $9.2 million exploration program planned this year for Chidliak, to be funded by BHP Billiton.

Stornoway Updates Status of Aviat Project

Stornoway Diamond Corporation and Hunter Exploration Group reported that they have recovered 89.55 carats of diamonds from processing the first 43 metric tons (47 tons) of an approximately 200-metric-ton (220-ton) sample of kimberlite from their Aviat Project in Nunavut, Canada. The largest diamond recovered from this first sample is a 0.81-carat grey fragment. A conceptual study of Aviat concluded that, based upon the drilling undertaken to date, there were an estimated 12.4 million to 16 million metric tons (13.7 million to 17.6 million tons) of kimberlite material within four separately distinguishable kimberlite sheets. Once final results of the 200-metric-ton sample are known, Stornoway expects to conduct a market valuation of the parcel. This will be undertaken once the world rough diamond market has stabilized.

Mexivada Begins Diamond Mining Near Koidu

Mexivada reported that it has begun mining diamonds near Koidu Town, Sierra Leone. Mexivada's partners have received a second artisanal mining license for diamond mining, which covers a one-acre site adjoining its first licensed area. So far the channel has yielded white, green and yellowish diamonds of up to 14 carats in the area downstream from Mexivada's present operation.
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Grofik,došel ti ode mne včera mail ? 8)
Registrovaný uživatel
Míša prišiel,
nehnevaj sa nemal som chuť na serioznu :) odpoveď,len sem na p....y :mrgreen: trochu porelaxovať. :twisted:

Neboj odpoviem. ;)
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Nic se neděje,v pořádku. :)
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Dnešní tisk...
Největší světový producent diamantů, společnost De Beers z Jihoafrické republiky, si kvůli světové ekonomické krizi musel půjčit od svých akcionářů půl miliardy dolarů. Podnik s tím uvedl, že prodej diamantů na konci minulého roku výrazně ochabl.
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Čo už hádam nebudú horší ako ine korporácie. :lol: :mrgreen: :roll:

Prečo nestiahnúť peniaze pokiaľ je od koho. ;)
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Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, February 27, 2009
News: Debswana, the world’s largest diamond producer, to shut operations until April 15 and suspend production of two mines through 2009. We estimate the move will reduce their annual production by about 20% or by 6-7 mil. cts. De Beers to borrow $500 mil. from shareholders, 2008 rough sales flat at $5.9 bil. even though they increased prices by 14%. 2008 profits at $90 million. Gold passes $1,000/oz for first time since March 2008. U.S. Jan. jewelry price index +5%. German and Indian jewelry shows better than expected. Zale 2Q sales -18% to $679 mil. with loss of $24 mil. and plans to close 115 stores. Birks & Mayors 3Q sales -28% to $88 mil. with $42.7 mil. loss. 4Q jewelry sales -44% to $35 mil. profits -64% to $3 mil. J. C. Penney 4Q sales -10% to $5.8 bil. same store sales -11% and profits -51% to $211 mil. with jewelry ranking as weakest category. Macao 4Q watch, jewelry sales +22% to $138 mil. Fortunoff liquidates. Finlay to exit department stores and close 40 specialty boutiques.


Martin Rapaport - Special Presentation
"State of the Diamond Industry"
BASELWORLD Watch and Jewellery Show

When: Monday, March 30
Presentation 1: 8:00-10:00
Presentation 2: 14:00-16:00
Where: Basel Congress Center, Montreal Hall

To reserve a space, email

Rapaport Fair Trade Jewelry Conference
"Sourcing and Marketing Fair Trade Jewelry"
BASELWORLD Watch and Jewellery Show

When: Monday March 30,10:30-13:30
Where: Montreal Hall, Basel Congress Center

To reserve a space, email

Rapaport - Hong Kong Jewellery Fair
March 4, 2009 - March 8, 2009
Booth: Hall 5, Booth 5M41

Free RapNet Trading Service for Buyers at the Show
Contact: Ofira Guttman-Berrebi +852-9222-7001

Rapaport Pawnshop Tender in New York
By Appointment Only
March 16–19, 2009

Approximately 30,000 carats, Rounds and Fancies, -2.5 sieve to 1ct+
Large selection of melee from promotional to fine
qualities. Excellent opportunity for diamond and jewelry
manufacturers specializing in inexpensive diamonds.
Contact Myles Schakler at
or +1-212-354-9100 Ext. 2570


“These are unprecedented economic times, and it’s unfortunate that after all these years, a New York icon like Fortunoff is going to close and people are going to lose their jobs. Fortunoff has been a destination for fine jewelry, home goods and gifts at incredible value, and the going-out-of-business sale will offer a final opportunity to purchase this quality merchandise at even greater discounts.”

---Harvey M. Yellen
Chairman of Great American Group


De Beers Rough Diamond Prices +14% in 2008

De Beers rough diamond prices rose 14 percent on average in 2008, but the increase was mainly due to the boom period in the first fiscal half. Starting in September, the market turned south and demand for rough plummeted. Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sights in the fourth quarter fell 40 percent to approximately $1 billion. De Beers ended 2008 with its rough diamond sales flat at $5.9 billion and total sales up less than 1 percent to $6.9 billion. The company reported profits of $90 million after reporting a loss of $521 million for 2007. De Beers will take a shareholder loan of $500 million for 2009. De Beers rough production fell 6 percent to 48.1 million carats.

U.S. Jewelry CPI +5% in Jan.

The consumer price index (CPI) for jewelry in the U.S for the month of January rose 5 percent year on year to 153.46 points. The rate — based upon a reference of average prices in 1986 set at 100 points — was 3.7 points lower than in December 2008. For the watch and jewelry categories combined, the index for January increased 5 percent to 146.34 points, 3.4 points lower than December's reading.

U.S. Jan. Online Jewelry Sales -15%

Online jewelry sales in the U.S. fell 15 percent in January, according to comScore's latest figures. Of 14 sales categories tracked, jewelry was the fourth worst performer. Overall, online spending grew 2 percent during the month to $10.9 billion. The Internet ecommerce metrics company found that more than eight in 10 consumers were cutting back spending due to concerns about the economy, citing job security as the largest factor.

Macao 2008 Retail Sales for the Jewelry Category +64%

Macao reported that the value of its retail sales during the fourth quarter of 2008 rose 21 percent to $634.8 million. Sales of jewelry, watches and clocks accounted for the largest share with $137.7 million, or 22 percent of total retail sales. Full-year retail sales across all sectors grew 34 percent to $2.4 billion, and sales of jewelry, watches and clocks increased 64 percent for the full year.

Weak Global Demand Threatens Labor Cutbacks in Thailand

More than 100,000 workers employed in Thailand's diamond industry and other skilled sectors will lose their jobs as global demand falls, according to the local office of the International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA). The Thai Gem & Jewellery Manufacturers Association (TGJMA) added that it is facing a shortage of high-quality rough, which is necessary to compete in the global marketplace, and asked the government to assist in increasing supply channels.

Bain Expects Luxury Goods Sales to Drop by Single Digits in 2009

Revenues in the luxury-goods industry may fall by 3 to 7 percent this year according to consulting firm Bain. This estimate may even prove to be conservative, as the economic slowdown in the U.S. grows deeper each week. Diamonds, a byword for luxury, are being hit particularly hard as consumers resist the lure of sparkle and forgo fancy engagement rings for now.

KPCS Announces Namibian Intersession Meeting in June

The Kimberly Process Certification Scheme will hold its intersession meeting from June 23 to 25, 2009, in Windhoek, Namibia. The current agenda is comprised primarily of committee work and will not include formal speakers or presentations.

Reserve Bank Proposal Could Tap Polished Inventories to Improve Liquidity

To ease the liquidity problem in India's diamond industry, the task force created by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) may ask banks to finance diamond manufacturers, especially small and medium ones, against their stock of polished diamonds. Diamond industry leaders have been pushing for government intervention to help ease the crisis across the rough and polished marketplace.

Rapaport Broadcast News

What trends are emerging on the laboratory front? The International Gemological Institute, or IGI, is experiencing some interesting trends as the industry deals with the downturn. But even with poor retail performance, diamonds and platinum diamond jewelry were all the rage on the red carpet during the 81st Academy Awards.


Botswana's Diamond Exports Plunge

Botswana’s diamond exports in October fell 53 percent to $103.1 million, and November exports declined 73 percent to $46.6 million. The weaker marketplace for diamonds and other commodities caused ratings agency Standard and Poor’s (S&P) to revise its outlook on Botswana from stable to negative. Botswana’s diamond imports increased significantly in 2008 due to the development of the country’s beneficiation industry. Diamond imports in November rose 90 percent to $28.5 million. Imports for the first 11 months of the year increased by 259 percent to $342.6 million.


Zale 2Q Rev. -18%, Reports Loss of $24M

Zale's second fiscal quarter sales fell 18 percent to $679.4 million; the percentage drop was the same for same-store sales. Cost of sales decreased 9 percent to $381 million. Zale reported a loss of $23.6 million, or a 74-cent loss per share, compared with profits of $61 million in the second fiscal quarter of 2008. As consumers continue to cut spending, Zale plans further belt-tightening and intends to close 115 underperforming stores as leases expire during the year.

Birks & Mayors 3Q Sales -28%

Retailer Birks & Mayors reported that its net sales fell 28 percent to $88.1 million for the third quarter of fiscal year 2009, which ended December 27, 2008, and comparable store sales for the period decreased 23 percent. Translating Canadian sales into U.S. dollars accounted for $9.3 million of the drop in net revenues. Birks & Mayors' results showed a net loss of $42.7 million, down from profits of $12.7 million one year earlier.

JCPenney 4Q Sales -10%, Jewelry Performs Worst of All

J. C. Penney Company's sales in the fourth quarter fell 10 percent to $5.8 billion, and its same-store sales dropped 11 percent. Profits decreased 51 percent to $211 million. JCPenney stated that its strongest merchandise categories for the quarter were women's apparel and family shoes, while the weakest category of all was fine jewelry. For fiscal year 2008, JCPenney reported that its sales were down 7 percent to $18.5 million and profits declined 49 percent to $572 million. Jewelry performed poorly all year long, cited as a weak category in each of JCPenney's 2008 quarterly reports.

Saks Posts $99M Loss in 4Q, Sales -15%

Saks reported a net loss of $98.8 million in the fourth fiscal quarter ending January 31, 2009, compared with profits of $39.5 million one year ago. Fourth-quarter sales fell 15 percent to $835.5 million, and same store sales decreased by the same percentage. Jewelry was among Saks' weakest categories for the quarter. The retailer posted a full-year loss of $154.9 million, compared with profits of $47.5 million in 2007. Full-year sales declined 6 percent to $3 billion.

Macy's 4Q Sales -8%, Profits -59%

Macy's reported that its fourth-quarter sales, for the period ending January 31, 2009, fell 8 percent to $7.9 billion, and same-store sales declined 7 percent. Net income for the period dropped 59 percent to $310 million. For the full fiscal year, sales were down 5 percent to $24.9 billion, and same-store sales also decreased 5 percent.

Nordstrom 4Q Net Earnings -68%

Nordstrom reported that net earnings slumped 68 percent to $68 million in its fourth fiscal quarter. The luxury retailer reported that sales decreased 8 percent to $2.3 billion in the three months ending January 31, 2009, with same-store sales sinking 13 percent. For the full fiscal year, Nordstrom's net earnings fell 44 percent to $401 million. Total sales for the year ending January 31 dropped 6 percent to $8.3 billion, while same-store sales were down 9 percent.

Swank 4Q Sales -19%, Profits -25%

Swank reported that its fourth-quarter sales fell 19 percent to $34.8 million. Net income declined 25 percent to $2.6 million for the period, which ended December 31, 2008. This includes pretax income of $2 million associated with the settlement of a coverage dispute with one of Swank's insurance companies. For the fiscal year, sales dropped 11 percent to $114 million, and net income decreased 58 percent to $2.1 million.

Economic Collapse Clobbers Sotheby's 4Q Results

Sotheby's revenues fell 52 percent to $166.2 million for the fourth quarter that ended December 31, 2008. The auction house reported an operating loss of $696,000, compared with profits of almost $142 million one year ago. The company's net loss was $8.5 million, compared with $102.4 million a year ago. Full-year revenues decreased 25 percent to $691.6 million, operating income sank 73 percent to $74.4 million, and net income slumped 87 percent to $28.3 million. In 2009, Sotheby's expects to record approximately $9 million in restructuring expenses for additional layoffs and lease exits.

Sarin Rev. -11% in 2008, Profit -80%

Sarin Technologies reported that its 2008 group revenues fell 11 percent to $33.1 million as sales in the fourth quarter were slowed by the global recession. Higher expenses and the drop in overall sales led to an 80 percent decline in profits for the year to $1.6 million. Sarin said it invested in two companies during 2008, acquiring 100 percent of Galatea and 23 percent of IDEX Online. Separately, Sarin announced that it appointed Uzi Levami as chief executive officer (CEO), to fill the role that Zeev Leshem resigned in December.

Finlay to Exit Dpt. Stores, Close 40 of its Specialty Boutiques

Finlay Enterprises will abandon its business in leased department store counters and focus solely on its specialty jewelry stores. Arthur E. Reiner, chairman and CEO of Finlay, said the decline in the department store business in the past five years, together with the economic downturn, made leaving the leased counters behind a necessary measure to strengthen the company. Finlay also expects to close 40 underperforming specialty stores.

Fortunoff's 87-Year History Comes to an End with Total Liquidation Sale

Fortunoff began total liquidation sales at all 20 stores February 26, bringing an end to the company's 87-year history in retail. Inventory valued at approximately $212 million will be completely liquidated. Jewelry liquidation is being handled by Wilkerson and Associates and The Gordon Co.

Earlier in the week, a group with unsecured claims against Fortunoff objected to the sale of four lots of diamonds that sold to liquidators for $759,684, claiming that their value was much higher. Court documents stated that prospective bidders did not have an opportunity to inspect the diamonds and bidders weren't granted proper access. Based upon the Wells Fargo borrowing base calculation, the diamonds held a cost basis of $1,931,474.

Theo Fennell to Close Dublin Store Concession

Theo Fennell is closing its fine jewelry and watch concession in the Brown Thomas department store in Dublin, Ireland. The decision follows the company’s operations update in January, when the luxury jeweler decided to concentrate on expanding its brand in the U.K. and internationally. Theo Fennell recently reported poor 2008 holiday sales, down 21 percent from the previous year.

Serbian Jewelry Chain Fails to Sell, Gov't Vows to Try Again

Serbia's privatization agency said its attempt to sell state-owned jewelry chain Majdanpek at public auction failed due to lack of interest. The government sought a minimum price of $8.2 million. Jewelry chain Majdanpek, which was established 30 years ago and employs 344 people, was the biggest jewelry maker in the former Yugoslavia. The government intends to hold another auction to sell the chain.

Astra Diamonds Ends P.D.D. Partnership

Astra Diamonds has ended its joint activities with Yoni Tzruya within their P.D.D. Diamonds partnership effective immediately, the two Israeli companies said in a letter to the trade. The companies did not provide a reason for the split, saying only that their joint activities have ended "with full understanding, agreement and in good relations."

Merit Diamond Reaches Agreement in Suit Against Samuels, Rogers

Merit Diamond reported that an agreement has been reached with retailers Samuels Jewelers and Rogers Ltd., under which they will stop selling items that Merit claims are knockoffs of its signature Sirena Collection, and will destroy the remaining stock. Merit Diamond filed a complaint against the two jewelers in December, saying the retailers had infringed upon Merit's copyrights in the Sirena “Solitaire” and “Three Stones” pendants.

Charles & Colvard to Pursue Claim Against K&G Creations

Charles & Colvard stated that settlement discussions with JewelNet Corporation, which is doing business as K&G Creations, have been unsuccessful. Charles & Colvard's board of directors will now move forward with the lawsuit that the company filed on June 16, 2008, against K&G Creations. The board anticipates that the legal process could wind up in a court trial, scheduled for December 2009. Charles & Colvard is seeking $2.8 million with interest at a rate of 12 percent from July 4, 2008, while K&G has filed a $50 million counterclaim.

Harry Winston Opens Watch Boutique in Dubai

Harry Winston opened its first watch boutique in Dubai at the newly opened Atlantis Hotel. The store offers a selection ranging from the Harry Winston Avenue collection to diamond jewelry watches. The company announced that in the coming months the boutique will also carry an assortment of Harry Winston diamond jewelry collections.

Cartier Sues QVC, Watchmakers for Patent Infringement

Cartier sued network QVC and watchmakers TWI Watches and JMAM, alleging that the three parties conspired to promote and sell watches bearing designs that are close imitations of Cartier's Santos de Cartier and Pasha de Cartier Grille watches. Cartier requested an end to the manufacture, distribution, advertising and/or sale of watches that bear copies of its designs and trade dress, and asked for the destruction of all related products and marketing material.
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Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, March 06, 2009
News: Hong Kong Show opens slow with sellers refusing low bids for saleable goods. Rupee plummets to record low (51/$) weakening Indian market trading activity. DTC Feb. sight estimated at $110 mil., down from $600 mil. in Feb' 08. Diamdel 2008 rough sales -17% to $444 mil. De Beers Diamond Jewellers 2008 revenues +6%. U.S. chain store Feb. same-store sales -0.1%, but jewelry remains weakest category. Russia 2008 rough exports at 24.5 mil. carats. Sotheby's 4Q08 revenues -52% to $166 mil., with net loss of $9 mil. vs. 4Q07 profit of $102 mil. Finlay 4Q restructuring charge estimated at $85-$95 mil. California’s Robbins Bros. retailer files Chpt. 11, with trade debt at $10 mil. Toronto diamond exchange launched. Japan Jan. polished imports -8% to $67 mil.


Martin Rapaport - Special Presentation
"State of the Diamond Industry"
BASELWORLD Watch and Jewellery Show

When: Monday, March 30
Presentation 1: 8:00-10:00
Presentation 2: 14:00-16:00
Where: Basel Congress Center, Montreal Hall

To reserve a space, email

Rapaport Fair Trade Jewelry Conference
"Sourcing and Marketing Fair Trade Jewelry"
BASELWORLD Watch and Jewellery Show

When: Monday March 30,10:30-13:30
Where: Montreal Hall, Basel Congress Center

To reserve a space, email

Rapaport Pawnshop Tender in New York
By Appointment Only
March 16–19, 2009

Approximately 30,000 carats, Rounds and Fancies, -2.5 sieve to 1ct+
Large selection of melee from promotional to fine
qualities. Excellent opportunity for diamond and jewelry
manufacturers specializing in inexpensive diamonds.
Contact Myles Schakler at
or +1-212-354-9100 Ext. 2570


“The economy will be in shambles throughout 2009 — and, for that matter, probably well beyond — but that conclusion does not tell us whether the stock market will rise or fall."

Warren Buffett
Chairman and chief executive officer (CEO), Berkshire Hathaway


DTC Feb. Sight Estimated at $110M

Participants in the Diamond Trading Company's (DTC) February sight reported a slight increase in activity and interest in goods, although the sight remained comparatively very small. Sightholders estimated the value at about $110 million, down from an estimate of $600 million one year ago. The DTC also offered rejected boxes to sightholders after the sight ended and plans to review the success of this strategy for the next sight in March.

Diamdel Sales -17% in 2008

The Diamdel Group, which sells rough diamonds on behalf of De Beers to nonsightholders, saw its sales fall 17 percent to $444 million in 2008. Included in that result are sales by the Hindustan Diamond Company, a joint venture between De Beers and the government of India.

HK Show Buyers Seek Deep Discounts

Exhibitors at the 26th annual Hong Kong International Jewellery Show reported some positive demand during the first two days of the fair, where traffic was relatively strong given the weak economic environment. Reports indicated, however, that while there has been more activity and demand for certain items, deals were not closing, as buyers sought steep discounts. Exhibitors reportedly were selling some goods at a loss. The fair opened Wednesday, March 4, and continues through Sunday, March 8.

Canada Launches Diamond Exchange

Canada launched its first diamond exchange, the Diamond Bourse of Canada, in Toronto. The new bourse was established by 10 founding-member companies to serve Canada's diamond industry. Avi Paz, president of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB), welcomed the launch, calling on the bourse's leaders to apply to join the WFDB.

Robbins Bros. Chain Seeks Chpt. 11 Reorganization

Retailer Robbins Bros. Co. of California filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on March 3, 2009, following extensive negotiations to secure new investors and potential buyers. During its bankruptcy proceedings, the company intends to sell substantially all of its assets to two companies whose bids, taken together, formed the best offer. Robbins Bros. Co. does not require debtor-in-possession financing to continue to operate and does not expect any interruption in the delivery of goods and services to its customers throughout the U.S. Spence Diamonds of Canada has offered $3.5 million for certain assets in Texas and Illinois, and current owners and investors plan to set up Robbins Bros. Jewelry Inc. to secure the remaining assets. As of the filing, Robbins Bros. Co. reported trade debt of about $10 million.

U.S. Economy Shrinks 6%

The U.S. economy contracted by 6.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2008. The annualized quarterly drop in gross domestic product (GDP) was the worst since the first fiscal quarter of 1982. Earlier this month, the U.S. Commerce Department estimated that the decline would come to only 3.8 percent. Consumer spending, which accounts for nearly 70 percent of GDP, fell 4.3 percent, the biggest drop since the second quarter of 1980. Businesses also reduced spending in the period from October through December, with spending on equipment and software plunging almost 29 percent, the worst slump since 1958.

See the fabulous blue diamonds from Rio Tinto’s Argyle Diamond Mine and catch up with all the latest breaking news of the week.


Japan's Jan. Polished Diamond Imports -8%

Japan’s polished diamond imports fell 8 percent in January; imports for the month amounted to $67 million, compared with $73.1 million one year ago. Japan’s imports by volume declined 4 percent to 194,763 carats, as the average price dropped 4 percent to $344 per carat. Imports from India, Japan’s largest source for the month, rose by 14 percent to $31.3 million, but imports from each of its other major supplier countries were down.

Russia Exports 25M Carats of Rough in 2008

Russia exported 24.472 million carats of rough diamonds worth $1.6 billion in 2008. The country exported 17.28 million carats of diamonds worth $1.2 billion to the European Union (EU). It exported the remaining diamonds to Armenia, Belarus, Belgium, the UK, Israel, India, China, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the U.S., Switzerland, South Africa and Japan. Production during the year fell 4 percent to 36.9 million carats. Mine output by value dropped 5 percent to $2.5 billion and value per carat was $67.95, down from $68.56 in 2007.

Armenia's Jan. Diamond Production -67%

A total of 3,036 carats of diamonds were cut and polished in Armenia during January 2009, compared with 9,245 carats produced in January 2008 — a drop of 67 percent.


Zale Shares Close Below $1

Shares in Zale Corporation closed at 92 cents in New York, down 16 percent on the day, a historic low for the jewelry retailer. Zale opened trading at $1.07 and briefly hit $1.12. Then in late-morning trade, shares slipped below $1 and at one point touched 89 cents. At 92 cents, Zale shares were down 96 percent from one year ago. Zale reached its 52 week high of $30.89 in September 2008.

De Beers Diamond Jewellers 2008 Revenues +6%

Revenues at De Beers Diamond Jewellers rose 6 percent in 2008 as a strong bridal market helped boost sales. De Beers Group — which owns 50 percent of De Beers Diamond Jewellers in partnership with LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton — announced in its annual report that its retail arm saw sales increase dramatically in the first half of 2008, before the economic crisis slowed the retail jewelry market. The company did not provide total sales figures in the report.

HSN 2008 Sales +3% But Jewelry Performs Poorly

HSN noted that its poor sales this year of jewelry and fashion apparel were offset by strong performance in the electronics, housewares and health and fitness categories during 2008. HSN's fiscal-year sales rose 3 percent to $2 billion. The company reduced its headcount by 250 positions during the fourth quarter and eliminated merit increases for 2009. In the fourth quarter, gross profit margin was 31.8 percent, down from 33.5 percent one year ago.

Finlay 4Q Restructuring Charge Could Reach $95M

Finlay Enterprises provided cost estimates for its restructuring plans, which were first announced on February 26, 2009. The new strategy included exiting its department store counters and closing 40 specialty stores. Finlay will reduce headcount, primarily in administrative functions based in New York and in sales associate positions in the affected department store locations and specialty stores that are set to close. In carrying out these plans, Finlay expects to incur charges of $85 million to $95 million against its fourth quarter results. It will likely take an additional $40 million to $45 million charge in fiscal year 2009.

Damas Shelves Plans for Six New Stores

Jewelry retailer Damas has placed plans to open six new stores in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on hold. The global slowdown and lower consumer demand have forced the retailer to this decision. However, Damas maintained that it will not be closing any stores due to the poor market conditions.

DTC Launches Southern Africa 2009 Collection

The Diamond Trading Company (DTC) launched a new collection of diamond jewelry — the DTC Shining Light Awards Southern Africa 2009 Collection — at the Radisson Hotel in Sandton, South Africa. The new collection comprises 18 spectacular pieces of diamond jewelry set with more than 14,000 diamonds, including natural black diamonds, green diamonds, canary yellow and cape colored diamonds and, of course, brilliant white diamonds. to Auction the Gianni Versace Tiara has acquired the Gianni Versace Tiara and will present it for public auction. The online jewelry website estimates the tiara's value at more than $3 million, and will commence the auction with an opening bid of $699,000 on March 23, 2009, at 9:00 a.m. PDT. The tiara contains more than 1,200 diamonds, all of which are GIA or EGL certified.

Mission Viejo Approves Green Construction of a New Jared Store

The planning commission of Mission Viejo, California, approved construction of a new 5,937-square-foot building for a Jared the Galleria of Jewelry store. The new Jared store will feature Coronado stone treatments and earth-tone colors along with a tower element, mahogany stain wood trim, eagle roof tile and burgundy awnings. The commission also noted that the the structure will "feature green building methods."

New Online Diamond Jeweler Enters the Market

Cascade Star launched a high-end diamond jewelry website. The available range of jewelry products includes haute couture designs, loose diamonds, diamond solitaire rings, earrings and pendants. The website also offers custom jewelry designs and manufacturing services. Cascade Star says it is backed by several partnerships with jewelry manufacturers, including three Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sightholders and one Rio Tinto Select Diamantaire.


Israeli Diamond Industry Credit Falls Below $2B

Israel’s bank credit to the diamond industry fell 21 percent to $1.9 billion during the four months through the end of January 2009, according to the Union Bank of Israel. The bank explained in its 2008 annual report published Wednesday that the decrease came as the global economic crisis slowed demand for diamonds and the banking sector tightened its lending to the industry.

Collectors Universe Exits Diamond Grading Business

Collectors Universe announced that it has decided to discontinue its business in authenticating and grading diamonds and colored gemstones. Collectors Universe, parent company of the Gem Certification and Assurance Lab (GCAL) and the American Gemological Laboratories (AGL), will continue to license its Gemprint identification technology and related patents, and Howard Pomerantz will remain manager of that licensing effort. The Palmieri Group, however, will continue GCAL’s diamond grading business.

IDI Cranks Up Marketing Effort for Industry

The Israeli Diamond Institute Group of Companies (IDI) has launched the first stage of a strategic initiative to provide additional marketing support to Israeli diamond manufacturers and exporters. Moti Ganz, IDI chairman, explained that the program was created in response to the international economic crisis and its effect on the global diamond industry.

GIA India to Offer AJP Course in Bangalore

The Gemological Institute of America - India (GIA India) plans to increase the accessibility of its accredited Graduate Gemologist and Graduate Diamonds Diploma Programs in the coming year. As a first step, GIA India, the education partner in the South India Jewellery Show, will conduct seminars at the show, in Bangalore from March 23 to 27, and will launch the Accredited Jewelry Professional (AJP) Diploma there.

India's Diamond Exporters Diversify into Equity Trading

Several big diamond exporters are planning to diversify into equity trading, following the decline in demand for polished stones in the key markets. The diamond traders are planning to acquire sharebrokers' cards on equity bourses. Some of them have already increased their exposure in gold futures.

Two Separate Robberies Net a Total of $1M in Diamonds

A traveling Israeli dealer in Missouri and a diamond store manager in Texas became the latest victims of robberies. An estimated $400,000 to $500,000 in jewels was stolen from an Israeli diamantaire as he drove up to a Courtyard by Marriott hotel on the outskirts of Kansas City for the night. In Dallas, Texas, a robber disguised as a FedEx delivery man stole $600,000 worth of diamonds from the Select Diamond Company. The robber also took $100,000 worth of Rolex watches. This suspect rushed the door when he was granted entry and knocked the store manager unconscious.

India Announces Skill-Enhancement Aid For Diamond Workers

Minister Narendra Modi announced a skill-enhancement aid package for diamond workers. The state government also introduced a subsidy scheme, under which diamond workers who turn to farming can get short-term agricultural loans at a 3 percent interest rate. A diamond worker enrolled in the skill package will get a stipend of $1.95 (INR 100) per day and up to $48.70 (INR 2,500) per month.

JCK Shaves One Day Off the Luxury & Premiere Show

The organizers of the invitation-only Luxury & Premiere show reduced the event by one day. Luxury & Premiere will now run May 27 to 29, 2009, at the Venetian Resort and The Palazzo Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was previously announced, in August 2008, that the organizers of the JCK Vegas Show, which runs May 30 through June 2, will cut one day from that show's schedule as well.

Groups Back Diamond Grading Standards in Hong Kong

Hong Kong launched a new certification scheme meant to increase consumer confidence in diamonds. The Hong Kong Laboratory Accreditation Scheme on Diamond Testing, sponsored by the Hong Kong Productivity Council and the Gemmological Association of Hong Kong, provided statutory definitions for diamond and jade, and the government now obliges retailers to provide detailed invoices and receipts that conform to those specific definitions.

HRD Antwerp Initiates Partnership with Hong Kong

HRD Antwerp will launch diamond grading courses in Hong Kong, in close cooperation with the Hong Kong Institute of Gemmology. Two intensive programs will be conducted by an experienced HRD Antwerp instructor: The Certified Diamond Grader course and the Diamond Rough Sorting Basic course. The first course includes training in the principles of diamond optics, grading, identification and imitation detection. The second teaches the basic methods of sorting diamonds.


Banda Wins Fifth Consecutive Term

New York Diamond Dealers Club election results:
President - Jacob Banda
Vice President - Moshe Mosbacher
Secretary - Nissan Perla
Treasurer - Jacob Weinstock
Board Of Directors
Meilech Fastag
Moshe Zweibel
Abraham Einhorn
David Klein
Aaron Landau
Solomon Rybak
Zev Oster
Gary Dimenstein
Leon Well
Robert Moskovitz
Phillip Klein
Eli Gottleib
Dov Fruchter
Benjamin Moller
Moshe David Reisz
Joseph Khafi

24 Karat Club of NY Announces New Board Members

Phyllis M. Bergman was elected 2009 chairperson of the 24 Karat Club of New York. Bergman is president of Mercury Ring Corporation, and is the first woman to be elected chairperson. Michael Toback, president of Myron Toback Inc., was elected as the club's president, and Harvey O’Conor, president of Findings, was elected club vice president. Alan F. Kleinberg of Michael Werdiger Inc. was elected treasurer and John Kennedy of the Jewelers Security Alliance (JSA) was elected club secretary. Todd Wolleman, president of Leo Wolleman Inc., was voted in as a new board member.

True North Gems Appoints Amaral, Groves to Lead Greeland Teams

True North Gems announced that Rejane Amaral has been promoted to project manager of True North's operations in Greenland, and that Iain Groves will take on the role of senior exploration geologist at the company's Greeland-based Fiskenaesset ruby project. The appointments were made following the departure of Greg Davison, who was vice president of exploration for True North.

Employees of Michael Fina, Mervis Diamond Win Sales Award

Platinum Guild International's “Platinum Sellers Contest” named Richard Wubnig of Michael C. Fina in New York its winning sales associate for increasing his sales by 53 percent during the period from October 1 through December 21, 2008, compared with one year ago. The second-, third- and fourth-place winners are all sales associates at Mervis Diamond Importers in Tysons Corner, Virginia.


ALROSA to Extend Credit to Cutters in Armenia

ALROSA is ready to extend credit to Armenia to help boost activity at its diamond processing plants. Armenia would use the credit to buy ALROSA's rough diamonds.

RBC Downgrades Harry Winston on Continued Diamond Weakness

RBC Capital Markets slashed its outlook for the Harry Winston Diamond Corporation, explaining that declines in rough diamond prices could negatively impact the company’s prospects for the next two years. The investment firm cut its one-year target for Harry Winston from $13 to $5 per share, and lowered its rating for the company from "Outperform, Above Average Risk" to "Sector Perform, Speculative Risk."

Venezuela to Reactivate Plants For Diamond Mining

Venezuela plans to reactivate the Guaniamo and Santa Elena de Uairen plants in Bolivar state, to exercise stricter control over diamond production, mining and industrialization. Venezuela is not a current member of the Kimberley Process.

Namibian Resources Places Mine on Care, Maintenance

Namibian Resources, which mines diamonds on behalf of Namdeb, placed its operations on care and maintenance due to weakness in the diamond markets.

Botswana to Shed More Jobs

Botswana, the world's largest diamond miner, has lost 4,528 jobs — about half of them at Debswana — so far this year, as global demand for the precious stones plummeted. Debswana announced the closure of two mines, and laid off a total of 1,000 staff members and another 1,000 contract workers this past week.

Blue Gum Diamond Project Yields Almost 13K Carats in 2008

The Blue Gum Diamond Project in South Africa yielded 12,600 carats of diamonds in 2008. The diamonds received an average value of $512 per carat at tender. After ramping up production in the second and third quarters of the year, however, the project was placed on care and maintenance at the end of November.

Pangea DiamondFields Raises $12M

Pangea DiamondFields raised at least $12 million in an open offer placement of its shares. The diamond exploration company reported that it has now met all of the offer's conditions. A total of 1,608,579,082 offer shares have been issued, more than the minimum amount required for the offer to be valid. The company received payment for 71,263,050 shares this week, helping it reach the $12 million target.

Fort a la Corne Delivers Seventh Diamond Sample

The Fort a la Corne joint venture in Canada has so far produced 299.3 carats in bulk sampling from 2,010.5 dry metric tons (2216.2 tons) of kimberlite. With a seventh sample from the project now sent for valuation, a total of 1,394 commercial-sized diamonds — i.e. stones greater than a 1.18-millimeter-square mesh screen — have been recovered. The four largest are 9.37, 7.16, 5.42 and 4.77 carats.

Rio Tinto Tenders a Rare Offering of Blue Diamonds

Rio Tinto’s Argyle Diamond Mine is set to showcase its rare blue diamonds to the world in a unique sale known as the "Once in a Blue Moon" collection. While the Argyle Diamond Mine is well-known for producing rare pink and champagne diamonds, it also produces other colors such as rare blue stones. It is a closed tender and will be showcased in Perth, Hong Kong and Tokyo before bids close on April 8.

West African Diamonds to Start Production at Guinea Mine

West African Diamonds (WAD) announced Wednesday that it plans to start production of diamonds at its Bomboko alluvial mine in Guinea in April. The launch comes as other mining companies are scaling back production due to the slowdown in demand for rough diamonds. At full production, the mine is projected to produce 18,000 metric tons (19,842 tons) per month.


Week ending March 5, 2009

Mar. 5 Feb. 26 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.795 0.780 0.015
$1 = Rupee 51.8 50.5 1.3
$1 = Israel Shekel 4.24 4.17 0.07
$1 = Rand 10.61 9.89 0.72
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.29 1.25 0.04

Precious Metals
Gold $932.90 $945.10 -$12.20
Platinum $1,061.00 $1,051.00 $10.00

Stock Indexes Chng.
BSE 8,197.92 8,954.86 -756.94 -8.45%
Dow Jones Avg. 6,595.44 7,182.08 -586.64 -8.17%
FTSE 3,529.86 3,915.64 -385.78 -9.85%
Hang Seng 12,211.24 12,894.94 -683.70 -5.30%
S & P 500 682.55 752.83 -70.28 -9.34%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 439.99 480.87 -40.88 -8.50%

Birks & Mayors $0.20 $0.35 -$0.15 -42.86%
Blue Nile $22.39 $22.98 -$0.59 -2.57%
Charles & Colvard $0.28 $0.41 -$0.13 -31.71%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $0.88 $0.88 $0.00 0.00%
Fuqi International $3.68 $4.13 -$0.45 -10.90%
JCPenney $14.38 $15.43 -$1.05 -6.80%
Kohl's $35.71 $34.70 $1.01 2.91%
Lazare Kaplan $1.46 $1.85 -$0.39 -21.08%
LJ International $0.51 $0.53 -$0.02 -3.77%
Macy's $6.58 $7.84 -$1.26 -16.07%
Man Sang $1.05 $1.30 -$0.25 -19.23%
Movado Group $4.79 $5.73 -$0.94 -16.40%
Nordstrom $12.23 $12.97 -$0.74 -5.71%
Saks $1.99 $2.36 -$0.37 -15.68%
Signet $7.39 $7.24 $0.15 2.07%
Sotheby's $6.75 $6.77 -$0.02 -0.30%
Tiffany $17.13 $18.96 -$1.83 -9.65%
Wal-Mart $49.75 $48.24 $1.51 3.13%
Zale $0.92 $1.21 -$0.29 -23.97%

Bulgari €3.12 €3.06 €0.06 1.96%
Bijou Brigitte €72.30 €75.70 -€3.40 -4.49%
Esa €2.07 €2.75 -€0.68 -24.73%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,344.00 CHF 1,550.00 -CHF 206.00 -13.29%
LVMH €45.76 €46.46 -€0.70 -1.51%
Pinault P-R SA €47.96 €46.67 €1.29 2.76%
Richemont SA CHF 14.50 CHF 15.89 -CHF 1.39 -8.75%
Swatch Group CHF 127.00 CHF 133.50 -CHF 6.50 -4.87%
Theo Fennell (pence) 13.00 12.40 €0.60 4.84%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 6.95 7.13 -0.18 -2.52%
Gitanjali Gems 35.00 38.15 -3.15 -8.26%
Rajesh Exports 23.35 23.70 -0.35 -1.48%
Ren. Jewellery 18.55 20.00 -1.45 -7.25%
Su-Raj Diamonds 19.30 21.15 -1.85 -8.75%
Titan 709.75 762.20 -52.45 -6.88%
Zodiac JRD 10.45 9.75 0.70 7.18%
Suashish Diamonds 118.70 110.75 7.95 7.18%

Michael Hill NZD 0.48 NZD 0.48 NZD 0.00 0.00%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $6.80 $7.13 -$0.33 -4.63%
Archangel CAD 0.06 CAD 0.07 -CAD 0.01 -14.29%
Harry Winston CAD 2.67 CAD 3.13 -CAD 0.46 -14.70%
Mountain Province CAD 0.76 CAD 0.79 -CAD 0.03 -3.80%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.52 CAD 0.55 -CAD 0.03 -5.45%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.03 CAD 0.04 -CAD 0.01 -25.00%
Shore Gold CAD 0.29 CAD 0.29 CAD 0.00 0.00%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.09 CAD 0.11 -CAD 0.02 -18.18%
True North Gems CAD 0.08 CAD 0.09 -CAD 0.01 -11.11%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 20.0 24.0 -4.0 -16.49%
BHP Billiton 1,107.0 1,155.0 -48.0 -4.16%
Firestone Diamonds 16.0 16.3 -0.3 -1.54%
Gem Diamonds 147.5 173.8 -26.3 -15.11%
Gemfields 3.3 3.3 0.1 2.15%
Mano River 2.8 2.8 0.0 0.00%
Mwana Africa 3.5 3.4 0.2 5.37%
Namakwa Diamonds 18.8 21.0 -2.3 -10.71%
Petra Diamonds 26.8 28.5 -1.8 -6.14%
Rio Tinto plc 1,733.0 1,874.0 -141.0 -7.52%
Registrovaný uživatel
Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, March 27, 2009
News: Prices stabilizing as market conditions improve for small to medium sizes up to 3 cts. Large stone liquidity remains problematic with some improvement in trading activity as sellers accept new price realities. Rough tenders bringing higher prices which may not be sustainable. BaselWorld begins with low expectations. Tiffany & Co. 4Q sales -20% to $841 mil., profits -76% to $31 mil. Signet 4Q sales -19% to $1.1 bil., with loss of $424 mil., vs. profits of $143 mil. in ‘08. Kinross Gold to invest $46 mil. for 20% share in Harry Winston and $104 mil. for indirect stake in HW Diavik mine. ALROSA asks Gokhran to buy all its rough in '09; Angola to buy rough from state-owned Endiama. Henricks Jewelers to liquidate $8 mil. worth of inventory. Diamond Empowerment Fund elects Neal Goldberg of Zale as co-president. U.S. trade must report 2008 rough imports/exports to State Dpt. by April 1.


Martin Rapaport - Special Presentation
"State of the Diamond Industry"
BASELWORLD Watch and Jewellery Show

When: Monday, March 30
Presentation 1: 8:00-10:00
Presentation 2: 14:00-16:00
Where: Basel Congress Center, Montreal Hall

RSVP not required.
To reserve a space, email

Rapaport Fair Trade Jewelry Conference
"Sourcing and Marketing Fair Trade Jewelry"
BASELWORLD Watch and Jewellery Show

When: Monday March 30,10:30-13:30
Where: Montreal Hall, Basel Congress Center

RSVP not required.
To reserve a space, email


"This is the worst crisis our generation has seen, especially in the U.S....but family and love are positive values in the current environment. Our investments this year, in total, could be even higher than last year or at the same level. We are investing [in new stores in China] because we know that there will be an after-crisis. It could be in two months or six months or a year or whenever....We are preparing every day for it."

---Stanislas de Quercize, chief executive officer (CEO), Van Cleef & Arpels


ALROSA to Sell All Output to Gokhran

The Gokhran is expected to buy considerably more rough diamonds from ALROSA this year. Gokhran's draft 2009 budget, which is still subject to approval by the government, set aside funds to buy rough diamonds and precious metals this year. The Gokhran plans to sell around $1.4 billion worth of precious metals and stones, three times what was sold in 2008. The Gokhran will sell diamonds partly at auctions, the first one of this year being slated for March 31. Additionally, ALROSA has signed a memorandum with the Leader Management Company to begin putting the infrastructure in place to trade high-end cut diamonds as a marketable commodity. ALROSA has also revealed that Gazprom is interested in acquiring the diamond mining company's gas assets. There may be a buyer as well for ALROSA's oil subsidiary, ALROSA Irelyakhnft, but the party was not disclosed.

U.S. Rough Diamond Import, Export Reports Come Due April 1

If your U.S.-based company imported or exported rough diamonds during 2008, you must file that information with the government on or before April 1. The Jewelers Vigilance Committee (JVC) offers a template at — or you may report the information in your own fashion — and email it to USKimberleyProcess[at]

Importers and exporters must report the total numbers of their imports or exports in any of the following categories:
7102.19 – Unsorted (gem and industrial) rough diamonds
7102.21 – Sorted rough industrial diamonds
7102.31 – Sorted rough gem diamonds

Recession Expected to Slow Visitor Traffic at BaselWorld

Organizers of the BaselWorld 2009 Watch & Jewellery Show expect fewer buyers to attend, as the economic downturn continues to impact spending in the gem and jewelry industry. BaselWorld runs through Tuesday, April 2. The 2008 show saw record attendance, with 106,000 visitors, according to organizers.

Rapaport Broadcast News

Is optimism enough to save the U.S. economy from the "greatest depression”? In the second and final segment of our interview with Gerald Celente — founder of the The Trends Research Institute — the discussion turns to what has to happen to spark a recovery. More pertinently for the diamond industry, Celente shares his thoughts on what sets diamonds apart in this down market.


Signet Records 4Q Loss of $424M

Signet Jewelers posted a net loss for its fourth fiscal quarter that ended January 31, 2009, due to a slump in sales and the costs of one-time impairment charges. Signet reported a loss of $424 million, compared with net profits of $143 million one year ago. Signet previously reported that its fourth-quarter sales fell 19 percent to $1.1 billion. Same-store sales were down 15 percent.

Tiffany 4Q Profits -76%

Tiffany & Co.'s profits tumbled during its fourth fiscal quarter as the weak consumer market, particularly in the U.S., took its toll on company sales. Profits for the three months ending January 31, 2009, fell 76 percent to $31.1 million. Fourth-quarter sales declined 20 percent to $841 million, with sales in the U.S. falling 30 percent during the period. U.S. same-store sales dropped 33 percent.

Skinner Fine Jewelry Auction Nets Almost $2M

Auction house Skinner reported that its fine jewelry sale fetched almost $1.8 million. An Art Deco diamond, onyx, jadeite and coral brooch by Boucheron Paris sold for $189,600, and a renaissance revival enamel, sapphire and diamond brooch sold for $71,100. The sale also included a Renaissance Revival 18-karat gold gem-set armlet, circa 1880, featuring sapphire and diamond florets, bezel-set sapphire, emerald and ruby accents and rose-cut diamond highlights, which sold for $40,290.

Sotheby’s London Fine Jewels Sale Garners $2M

Sotheby’s London Fine Jewels sale generated $1.9 million, selling 73 percent by lot and 77 percent by value. The top lot, an early 20th-century diamond necklace with two circular-cut diamonds weighing 5.19 carats and 5.17 carats respectively, sold for $88,922, within the presale estimate. A cultured pearl and diamond necklace by Cartier sold for $83,696. Rounding out the top three lots was a 5.63-carat brilliant cut diamond ring, which sold for $81,954.

Henricks Jewelers to Liquidate Inventory

Henricks Jewelers in Florida is liquidating the entire inventory, worth $8 million, of its 12,000-square-foot Bonita Springs showroom. The ongoing 60-day sale includes steep discounts on diamonds and gemstones. Henricks filed Chapter 11 in November 2007, and reorganized in March of the following year, but then became unable to meet its financial obligations, leading to the current liquidation.

Aurum Plans Cost Reductions But Reports Steady Sales

Aurum Holdings, the owner of luxury jewelers Goldsmiths, Mappin & Webb and Watches of Switzerland reassured markets of the health of its business after the collapse of former investor Baugur. Aurum, which counts the high street jewelry stores among its portfolio, said that performance since the start of the year was flat, but considering the climate, it had "exceeded expectations." The group, which has about 200 stores in the U.K., said it had decided to implement more reductions and was working with its banks to find ways to steer it through "challenging" economic conditions.

Dubai Pearl Exchange Tender Nets Sales of $1M

The Dubai Pearl Exchange held its first pearl tender in February, and reported that the sale generated more than $1 million. The invitation-only event attracted 40 companies. Highlights of the sale included an exceptionally rare drop-pair of Paspaley Pearls' natural pearls, which were purchased by Swiss Pearls of Switzerland, and a set of cherry-colored Robert Wan Tahitian pearls, strand and earrings, bought by Shafiian Gem.

JAR Headlines Christie's NY Sale

Christie’s upcoming jewelry sale, on April 22, 2009, in New York, will offer diamonds, colored gems and signed jewels, including antique, Belle Époque, Art Nouveau, retro and contemporary creations, as well as five JAR jewels. The JAR jewels will include three pairs of elaborate ear clips: a pair of diamond and black-diamond hedgehog ear clips with an estimated value of $20,000 to $30,000; a pair of emerald and diamond ear clips, estimated at $20,000 to $30,000; and a pair of chalcedony, diamond and sapphire ear clips in a fan design, estimated at $25,000 to $35,000. The show will also offer two JAR brooches for sale, one featuring a 103.28-carat cabochon emerald and one with a cushion-cut, 52.57-carat sapphire centerpiece.

Timex Group to Consolidate Business Unit Operations in Connecticut

The Timex Group will consolidate the operations of its Timex and Callanen International businesses at its Middlebury, Connecticut, headquarters. Timex is currently located in Middlebury, while Callanen International is housed in Norwalk, Connecticut. The company announced the consolidation will result in some "limited staff realignment and reductions."

La Vie Group Signs With Alan Friedman of Beverly Hills

The La Vie Group of Companies signed with jewelry designer Alan Friedman to head the design and direction of a new project called "Alan Friedman International." The La Vie Group is an expanding jewelry industry coalition of manufacturers, distributors, designers and consumer brands led by Super Bell Jewelery. The Alan Friedman International collections will be previewed at the JCK Vegas Show, which runs May 30 through June 2, 2009.

Armaan Swiss Diamond Watches Enters U.S. Market

Armaan Swiss Diamond Watches entered the U.S. marketplace with a launch party, held recently in Beverly Hills, California. The luxury watch company, which was founded in 2006 by Nirav Bhansali, is based out of Lugano, Switzerland. The brand offers men's and women's timepieces, ranging in price from $3,000 to $90,000, in a variety of styles and color combinations.

Tanishq Looking at Conservative Growth in 2009-10

The Tanishq jewelry retail chain of Titan Industries is assuming conservative growth in 2009-2010, in view of the economic slowdown and uncertain gold prices, and will focus on quality of sales. The company lowered its expectations for 2008-2009, anticipating a 30 percent growth rate from 2007-2008, instead of the previously projected 35 to 40 percent. In 2007-2008, Titan's jewelry sales came in at about $400 million.


Gem Sales Earn Myanmar $191M

Sources say Myanmar has earned more than $191 million from sales of jade and gemstones at its latest government-sponsored auction, despite a U.S. ban on such imports. Gem auctions are a major revenue earner for Myanmar's ruling party, which faces economic and political sanctions from the West because of its poor human rights record and its failure to hand over power to a democratically elected government. The government, which takes a 10 percent tax from the sales, does not release official sales figures from the auction.

Men Loot Jewelry Store, Escape in Porsche

An early-morning burglary at Kevin Jewelers in Mission Viejo, California, was captured on videotape, and police suspect it might have been an inside job. Three masked men grabbed all they could during the few moments they were inside the store. Surveillance video shows the suspects pacing outside Kevin Jewelers before shattering a window and entering the store. They smashed the glass display cases with hammers, snatched the merchandise and fled the scene in a Porsche SUV.

New York Antique Jewelry & Watch Show Returns July 24-27

The third annual New York Antique Jewelry & Watch Show will take place July 24 to 27, 2009, at the the Metropolitan Pavilion in Manhattan. The four-day event, which opens two days prior to the JA New York Summer Show, will bring together more than 100 dealers from major trading centers. The show runs from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. on July 24; 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on July 25 and 26; and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on July 27.

Responsible Jewellery Council Outlines the RJC System at Basel

The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) held a press conference, during the media day immediately prior to the opening of BaselWorld, to outline to exhibitors, attendees and the media the process of getting certification under the RJC System. RJC is open to all commercial ventures in the gold and/or diamond watch and jewelry supply chain that are willing to adhere to the RJC’s Code of Practices (COP) and to submit to third-party auditing. The RJC’s website — — has a full list of the council’s members and information on joining the organization.

Diamonds From Victor Set in Legislative Mace

Two diamonds from De Beers Canada's Victor Mine were installed in the ceremonial mace of the Ontario, Canada, legislature. One of the diamonds is cut and polished and the other is rough. The setting was designed by Reena Ahluwalia, De Beers jewelry award winner. Michael Gravelle, Ontario's minister of mines, said he hoped the diamond-studded mace would bring some optimism to the legislative body by reminding them of the potential wealth in diamonds lying underneath the province's soil.


Diamond Empowerment Fund Elects Goldberg, Chavis as Co-Presidents

The Diamond Empowerment Fund (DEF) elected two new board co-presidents: Neal Goldberg, Zale's chief executive officer (CEO), and Dr. Benjamin Chavis, president and CEO of the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network. The outgoing board president is Sally Morrison, director of the Diamond Information Center.

IDI Promotes Orna Chait to Chief Information Officer

The Israel Diamond Institute (IDI) Group of Companies announced that Orna Chait has been promoted to deputy managing director and chief information officer (CIO). In this capacity, Chait will be responsible for the information technology (IT) and online services of the IDI Group.


Angola Gov’t to Buy Local Diamonds

Angola is planning to buy diamonds mined in the country in order to boost local mining companies, which are reeling from the drop in global demand and prices. The government will buy the diamonds at market prices in order to maintain companies’ liquidity, so that they can meet salary and service obligations. Angola is the fifth-largest producer of rough diamonds by value.

Uganda Seeks $5M in Funding to Complete Mineral Surveys

Uganda is seeking $5 million in funding to complete a national mineral survey, and has informed the World Bank of this need. Previous stages of the survey have been funded by grants and loans from the World Bank, the Nordic Bank, the African Development Bank and the government of Uganda. As of January, the Ministry of Energy and Minerals had obtained results of airborne geophysical surveys for 80 percent of the country, which indicated high occurrences of diamonds, gold and other minerals, especially in the southwest, near the border with the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

DiamonEx Sells 80% of Lerala Mine

Australia-based DiamonEx has agreed to sell 80 percent of its Botswana subsidiary, DiamonEx Botswana Limited — which owns the Lerala diamond mine — to Fleming Asset Management Botswana. DiamonEx will also transfer its diamond exploration tenure in the U.S. to Fleming. The deal will relieve DiamonEx of approximately $16 million in loans. In addition, Fleming will take over DiamonEx’s obligations under convertible bonds equivalent to $6.8 million.

Rio Tinto Discovers Rich Diamond Resource in Madhya Pradesh

Rio Tinto has discovered an immensely rich diamond resource in Madhya Pradesh, India, a development that could boost the company's plans to invest in the country. Rio Tinto has identified an inferred diamond resource of some 37 million metric tons (40.8 million tons), with an estimated grade of 0.7 carats per metric ton.


Week ending March 26, 2009

Mar. 26 Mar. 19 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.735 0.730 0.005
$1 = Rupee 50.5 50.0 0.5
$1 = Israel Shekel 4.18 4.05 0.13
$1 = Rand 9.35 9.63 -0.28
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.23 1.23 0.00

Precious Metals
Gold $934.60 $959.00 -$24.40
Platinum $1,143.00 $1,123.00 $20.00

Stock Indexes Chng.
BSE 10,003.10 9,001.75 1,001.35 11.12%
Dow Jones Avg. 7,924.56 7,400.80 523.76 7.08%
FTSE 3,925.20 3,816.93 108.27 2.84%
Hang Seng 14,108.98 13,130.92 978.06 7.45%
S & P 500 832.86 784.04 48.82 6.23%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 603.60 535.11 68.49 12.80%

Birks & Mayors $0.43 $0.20 $0.23 115.00%
Blue Nile $33.34 $27.23 $6.11 22.44%
Charles & Colvard $0.30 $0.29 $0.01 3.45%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $0.85 $0.90 -$0.05 -5.56%
Fuqi International $4.29 $4.08 $0.21 5.15%
JCPenney $20.13 $17.69 $2.44 13.79%
Kohl's $42.97 $41.17 $1.80 4.37%
Lazare Kaplan $1.14 $1.15 -$0.01 -0.87%
LJ International $0.58 $0.49 $0.09 18.37%
Macy's $9.61 $8.76 $0.85 9.70%
Man Sang $1.54 $1.40 $0.14 10.00%
Movado Group $8.11 $7.76 $0.35 4.51%
Nordstrom $17.71 $15.26 $2.45 16.06%
Saks $1.99 $1.69 $0.30 17.75%
Signet $12.88 $10.33 $2.55 24.69%
Sotheby's $10.16 $9.03 $1.13 12.51%
Tiffany $22.73 $20.77 $1.96 9.44%
Wal-Mart $52.68 $49.95 $2.73 5.47%
Zale $2.35 $1.14 $1.21 106.14%

Bulgari €3.36 €2.92 €0.44 15.07%
Bijou Brigitte €81.90 €83.01 -€1.11 -1.34%
Esa €2.06 €1.82 €0.24 13.19%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,250.00 CHF 1,250.00 CHF 0.00 0.00%
LVMH €47.88 €48.97 -€1.09 -2.23%
Pinault P-R SA €47.79 €52.29 -€4.50 -8.61%
Richemont SA CHF 18.20 CHF 17.86 CHF 0.34 1.90%
Swatch Group CHF 136.50 CHF 145.00 -CHF 8.50 -5.86%
Theo Fennell (pence) 15.12 17.50 -€2.38 -13.60%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 7.91 7.65 0.26 3.40%
Gitanjali Gems 39.95 40.85 -0.90 -2.20%
Rajesh Exports 24.50 24.25 0.25 1.03%
Ren. Jewellery 20.05 21.60 -1.55 -7.18%
Su-Raj Diamonds 21.10 20.65 0.45 2.18%
Titan 774.40 727.00 47.40 6.52%
Zodiac JRD 11.50 11.05 0.45 4.07%
Suashish Diamonds 114.90 109.35 5.55 5.08%

Michael Hill NZD 0.53 NZD 0.53 NZD 0.00 0.00%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $9.14 $8.79 $0.35 3.98%
Archangel CAD 0.09 CAD 0.09 CAD 0.00 -5.56%
Harry Winston CAD 3.45 CAD 2.28 CAD 1.17 51.32%
Mountain Province CAD 0.88 CAD 0.78 CAD 0.10 12.82%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.66 CAD 0.55 CAD 0.11 20.00%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.04 CAD 0.04 CAD 0.00 0.00%
Shore Gold CAD 0.29 CAD 0.31 -CAD 0.02 -6.45%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.14 CAD 0.11 CAD 0.03 27.27%
True North Gems CAD 0.08 CAD 0.09 -CAD 0.02 -16.67%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 23.4 20.0 3.4 16.85%
BHP Billiton 1,459.0 1,405.0 54.0 3.84%
Firestone Diamonds 15.0 15.9 -0.9 -5.36%
Gem Diamonds 145.5 150.0 -4.5 -3.00%
Gemfields 3.4 3.4 0.0 0.00%
Mano River 3.3 3.0 0.3 8.33%
Mwana Africa 4.1 3.2 0.9 28.93%
Namakwa Diamonds 19.5 15.3 4.3 27.87%
Petra Diamonds 27.5 27.3 0.3 0.92%
Rio Tinto plc 2,382.0 1,979.0 403.0 20.36%
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Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, April 10, 2009
News: DTC March sight estimated at $200 mil. with pickup in demand and prices for rough diamonds. De Beers cuts DRC exploration and significantly reduces London staff. ALROSA to sell $500 mil. in rough to 15 Antwerp firms in '09. S&P suspends credit rating for ALROSA citing lack of disclosure of financial information. Hong Kong Jan./Feb. jewelry sales -3% with total retail -2% to $6.2 bil. Sotheby’s Hong Kong jewels sale at $16 mil. with 68% sold by lot and a 13.53ct., D, flawless selling for $1.5 mil. ($110,865p/ct). SunDiamond to set up Ontario Canada's first diamond cutting and polishing facility. Helzberg’s CEO Marvin Beasley resigns and is replaced by Beryl Raff. THE NEXT RAPAPORT PRICE LIST WILL BE PUBLISHED ON APRIL 24 DUE TO PASSOVER HOLIDAY.


"We've had to introduce more aggressive discounting and offer free gifts to stimulate sales in an attempt to offset the difficult global retail environment. This has been common practice among most retailers since the start of the financial crisis late last year. Many customers still regarded jewelry as an emotional purchase closely associated with special occasions in their life. [With our foray into the tough U.S. market] it's still early days for us, but if our model works, then we could grow our chain of stores to about 800."

Mike Parsell, CEO
Michael Hill International


DTC March Sight Estimated at $200M as Demand Improves Slightly

Reports from the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sight indicated a slight increase in demand for De Beers rough diamonds, as diamantaires respond to an apparent shortage in the market. The third sight of the calendar year, which ran from March 30 through April 3, had an estimated value of $200 million. This was double the average value of the previous three sights, but was still only about one-third the value of the March 2008 sale. Observers noted a generally more positive mood, a lack of rough in the market, a slight return of "demand-driven" buying, and strong requests for rough yielding polished sizes of 1 to 1.5 carats.

Participants in the sight were, however, still inhibited by DTC’s high prices relative to other sources of rough in the market. One sightholder expressed concern that the slight market upturn would give DTC confidence to maintain its high price levels. DTC vowed to continue offering smaller sights “until demand picks up at the consumer level.” Sightholders’ forecasted buying needs for the next 10 months were estimated at 50 percent lower than they were in 2008.

World Gold Jewelry Fabrication -10%, Expect Further Declines in 2009

World gold jewelry fabrication fell 10 percent in 2008 as jewelry demand was hurt by high prices and the recession. Fabrication will likely continue to decline in 2009, while prices remain high and the world economic outlook remains uncertain, according to GFMS Metals Consulting. Fabrication fell most steeply in the first half, rose nearly 10 percent in the third quarter and was steady in the final quarter of 2008. Jewelry demand in India was down almost 100 tons. Demand fell by almost a fifth in Italy and by 10 percent in the Middle East. Demand in China grew modestly — the only country to see an increase — to a record high, owing to a stronger yuan, an increase in investor demand and strong domestic consumption.

Gold prices could easily trade above $1,000 a troy ounce in the coming months, the group explained. A summer lull or the need for inflationary pressures to build could mean sub-$900-per-ounce prices in the short term; rising scrap supplies are weighing on prices. GFMS said that inflationary fiscal and monetary policies currently being enacted, particularly by the U.S. administration are the root cause of gold's potential. Central banks will also be reluctant to raise interest rates, and the dollar could weaken, further supporting gold prices.

Bank Opens $100M Facility for ALROSA, S&P Suspends Rating

VTB opened a credit facility of $100 million for ALROSA for working capital. VTB earlier, in December 2008, provided ALROSA with $1.3 billion in 600-day funding to refinance short-term debt on loans issued by investors. Meanwhile, Standard & Poor's (S&P) Ratings Services suspended its "BB-" long-term and "B" short-term corporate credit ratings for ALROSA, citing continued lack of information on the company’s financial and operating performance and prospects. S&P has not been supplied with sufficient information on ALROSA's sales volumes in the fourth quarter of 2008 and first quarter of 2009, or on the details of its agreement with the state-owned Gokhran of Russia. Updates are needed on ALROSA’s current liquidity position and progress in refinancing its material short-term debt before S&P can reinstate the ratings.
In other ALROSA news, the miner agreed to a distribution deal with the Antwerp diamond industry, under which ALROSA will sell $500 million in rough diamonds to 15 local companies in 2009. The deal could also be extended on a long-term basis. Its immediate terms were welcomed by the industry following a cut of rough supplies in January, the Antwerp World Diamond Centre stated.

Blood Emeralds Fund Pakistan Taliban

The emeralds of Pakistan's Swat Valley region are now under the control of the Taliban, which in a span of four months has occupied two of the largest mines in the area. The group has started round-the-clock mining operations, from which workers share up to 50 percent of their daily find with the Taliban. Most emeralds mined here range from just under 1 carat to more than 5 and fetch anywhere from $1,000 to more than $100,000 in the international market.

Rapaport Weekly Broadcast

In our second of three segments examining the U.S. economic outlook for 2009, Michael Niemira, the chief economist for the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), discusses the timeframe and measurement of consumer spending for luxury goods; consumer confidence and the reaction of media headlines; and what jewelry wholesale suppliers should prepare for in the coming quarters.



Shoppers Stay Cautious, Sales Decline Eases

Total retail sales at major chain stores in March fell 2.1 percent compared with one year ago. Macy's sales fell 9 percent, Nordstrom posted a 13.5 percent decline, Saks reported a drop of 24 percent, and Costco Wholesale sales fell 5 percent. Discount giant Wal-Mart Stores fell short of expectations as sales rose 1.4 percent. Upscale retailers were among the worst performers, as consumers continued to spend frugally on luxury items.

Hong Kong Feb. Retail Sales -13%, Jewelry Sales -3% for Year to Date

February retail sales in Hong Kong fell 13 percent to $2.6 billion. This drop was due in part to the timing of the Lunar New Year, which in 2008 fell out during February, but occurred in January this year. The volume of sales was down 14 percent in February. The government also revised its estimate of total retail sales in January to $3.6 billion, an increase of 7 percent. Combined January and February 2009 retail sales decreased 2 percent compared with the first two months of 2008. Jewelry, watch and clock sales dropped 3 percent for the combined period.

Sotheby’s Hong Kong Jewels Sale Garners $16M

Strong demand for larger diamonds of 5 to 15 carats helped Sotheby’s generate $16 million in sales at its magnificent jewels and jadeite auction in Hong Kong. The auction was sold 67.6 percent by lot. The top lot was a pair of very fine, marquise-shaped D color flawless diamond earrings, weighing a total of 16.58 carats, which sold for $1.7 million. The second lot was a pear-shaped, 13.53-carat D color flawless loose diamond, which sold for $1.5 million. The headlining lot and a number of high-value jadeite lots, however, failed to sell.

Russia's EPL Diamond Opens in Beijing

EPL Diamond Group opened a retail office to sell diamonds in Beijing. The company is Russia's third-largest diamond exporter and now has wholesale offices in Israel, the U.S. and Shanghai. The Beijing office marks a new era for the company, which will now start its retail trade development abroad.

Portland's Zell Bros. Could Close Unless a Buyer Steps Up

Zell Bros. Jewelers, the only store in the Bailey Banks & Biddle chain that doesn't carry that brand name, faces an uncertain future if a buyer is not found quickly. Zell’s employees said they had been asked not to talk to the media, but have reportedly told customers that the company intends to close the store.

Michael Hill Maintains Aggressive Discounting to Stimulate Sales

Michael Hill International has discounted merchandise more aggressively to stimulate sales, resulting in lower margins for the chain. In a trading update for the first nine months of the fiscal year, same-store sales at Australia were up 1 percent, while same-store sales in both New Zealand and Canada fell about 9 percent. Sales for the nine months increased 10 percent to $260 million. Even though the market is very difficult in the U.S., the retailer hopes to grow its chain of stores there to about 800.

SunDiamond to Open Ontario Diamond Cutting Facility

HRA-SunDiamond is setting up the first diamond cutting and polishing facility in Ontario, Canada. The factory, operated by SunDiamond's subsidiary Crossworks Manufacturing, will be completed later this year and will employ about 50 people. Crossworks will receive rough diamonds from the De Beers Canada Victor Mine through SunDiamond, which is a Diamond Trading Company (DTC) Canada sightholder. The new facility will cut and polish an estimated $25 million worth of rough per year. DTC has pledged to supply 10 percent of its output from Victor to Ontario-based cutters and polishers.

Sotheby's NY Magnificent Jewels Sale Features Important Diamonds

Sotheby’s New York spring sale of Magnificent Jewels will be held on April 23, 2009. The top lot is a fancy blue diamond ring set with a cut-cornered rectangular modified brilliant-cut stone weighing 8.24 carats, which is expected to bring in excess of $2.5 million. A fancy vivid yellow diamond ring, signed Jacob & Co., is set with a 15.61-carat center stone and 2.55 carats of flanking half-moon white diamonds; it has a presale estimate of $925,000 to $1 million. A pair of fancy vivid yellow diamond earrings featuring matched emerald-cut stones weighing 7.47 and 7.32 carats has a presale estimate of $800,000 to $1 million. Also on offer at the Sotheby's sale are a cushion-shaped diamond ring of 15.4 carats, F color, VS1 clarity, with a presale estimate of $1 million to $1.5 million, and a diamond ring set with an emerald-cut 13.98-carat, G color, VS2 clarity diamond with a presale estimate of $450,000 to $500,000.

Bonhams' April London Sale Features Diamonds, Colored Stones

Bonhams' next London sale of fine jewelry will be held on April 29, 2009, and will include diamonds, colored gemstones, natural pearls and signed jewels. Of particular interest is a brilliant-cut 5-carat, D diamond ring with a presale estimate of $117,600 to $147,000 (GBP 80,000 to GBP 100,000). A 6.87-carat Burmese ruby is estimated at $11,760 to $17,640 (GBP 8,000 to GBP 12,000), and an emerald and diamond ring by Bulgari set with a fine gem-quality Colombian 5.59-carat emerald with minor clarity enhancement, has a presale estimate of $44,100 to $58,800 (GBP 30,000 to GBP 40,000).

Elan to Launch Kathy Ireland Jewelry Line

Elan Luxury Collections is launching a line of jewelry designed by Kathy Ireland, chief designer and chief executive officer (CEO) of Kathy Ireland Worldwide. The new line will feature collections of fine jewelry, including bridal and fashion products, inspired by Kathy Ireland’s hallmark design styles.

Group Measures Favorability of Retail Chains within the Blog World

A new study by CARMA International, measuring the favorability of the coverage of top retailers within the blog world, found that wholesale clubs are favored over department stores when it comes to online praise or rants by consumers. CARMA analyzed consumer-written blog posts during January and February that specifically addressed leading retailers in the U.S. The media analysts identified wholesale clubs Costco, BJ's and Sam's Club as being viewed quite favorably by bloggers, with Costco the most commonly praised retailer in the study. CARMA found that Kohl's, Dillard's, Macy's and Sears rated below average in favorability to bloggers, while Target, Nordstrom, Saks and Neiman Marcus registered readings slightly more favorable than the study’s neutral benchmark. Wal-Mart was the subject of the largest number of negative blog posts, many of which were highly critical of the retailer, calling it “evil” or other similar invectives.

Six in 10 Consumers Don't Know When They Will Resume Spending

The majority of consumers polled by the Jewelry Consumer Opinion Council (JCOC) were not prepared to spend money on jewelry — and 58 percent overall said they had no idea when they'd even feel comfortable spending on discretionary items again. JCOC asked 666 panelists to weigh in on their willingness to spend on nonessential consumer goods. Ten percent said they'd feel comfortable spending within six months, another 10 percent said they'd spend within 12 months and 15 percent said it would take more than a year for them to be comfortable spending on nonessentials again. Once things turn positive again, 19 percent of the polled consumers told JCOC they'd indulge in vacation plans and travel, 13 percent would spend on home furnishings and dining out, and 5 percent said they'd spend on fine jewelry, high-definition televisions and children's items.


Number of Unemployed U.S. Workers Jumps Past 13M

The U.S. unemployment rate jumped to 8.5 percent in March, the highest since 1983, as a wide range of employers eliminated a net total of 663,000 jobs. Most economists expect that the job cuts will continue for much of this year. Since the recession began in December 2007, the economy has lost a net total of 5.1 million jobs, with almost two-thirds of the losses occurring in the past five months. The number of unemployed people climbed to 13.2 million in March. If discouraged workers and workers forced to work part-time are factored in, the unemployment rate rises to 15.6 percent for March.

Pakistan Adds Gems, Jewelry to Duty-Free Deal with Sri Lanka

Pakistan introduced duty-free measures for an additional 4,000 products imported from Sri Lanka, including gems and jewelry, as part of the free-trade deal between the two nations that originated in 2002. Duty-free access for these products into Pakistan became effective on March 20, 2009.

EGL USA Transforms HPHT Analysis with Fluorescence Cage

EGL USA offers the first visual observational criteria for identifying high-pressure high-temperature (HPHT) stones, using the “fluorescence cage” — a specific luminous intersecting pattern found along the cut edges and vertices of facets on particular colored HPHT-treated Ia diamonds with less than strong fluorescence. The visual effect is so distinct that it can be seen with a fluorescence microscope. Researcher Dr. Inga Dobrinets of EGL USA identified the cage in collaboration with Professor Alexander Zaitsev of the College of Staten Island/CUNY. Early research indicates that the effect results from the movement of optically active impurities that are triggered by the HPHT process.

Basel Show Visitor Count -12%

The number of visitors to the 2009 BaselWorld watch and jewelry show fell 12 percent to 94,900, according to event organizers. Foreign buyers constituted 68 percent of the total visitor count, compared with 64 percent in 2008. The organizers reported that 71 percent of attendees surveyed said they intended to return for the 2010 event. A total of 1,952 exhibitors from 45 countries showcased their products in an exhibition area of 160,000 square meters (1.7 million square feet).

GIA London to Host Business Development Strategies Class

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) London is offering an intensive five-day class on business strategies to help both students and professionals develop entrepreneurial and leadership skills. In particular, the courses will instruct attendees to analyze real-world campaigns and business decisions, and will challenge students to understand the strengths and weaknesses of the jewelry industry's best practices. There will be three Business Development Strategies classes, each with a duration of five days. Tuition for the classes will be GBP 715. The available dates are April 20 to 24, 2009; June 22 to 26; and November 9 to 13. Each runs from Monday to Friday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Tiffany CEO Receives $4M in 2008 Compensation

Michael J. Kowalski, chairman and chief executive of Tiffany & Co., received $4.2 million in compensation for 2008, which was a drop of 33 percent from one year ago. Kowalski's salary was $1 million, additionally, he was awarded stock-based compensation with a value of $2.9 million on the date granted. However he declined a performance-based bonus which was $1.8 million one year ago. Other company officers also did not receive a performance-related bonus, although all individuals were eligible, as the company reached its goal of full-year earnings of $243 million.

Beasley Resigns from Helzberg Diamond

Marvin Beasley resigned as chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) of Helzberg Diamond. Beryl Raff took over the role this week. Raff has spent more than 25 years in the retail jewelry industry — most recently, she was executive vice president and general merchandise manager of fine jewelry at J. C. Penney.

Jerry Hammond Appointed Director at Color Craft

Color Craft appointed Jerry Hammond as its new director of international sales. Hammond has 28 years of jewelry experience, in both retail and wholesale, and for the past nine years he has been in various sales management roles at Sunstone, Hot Diamonds USA, and the Colibri Group.

JBT Honors Jewelers Mutual, Names Matthies to the Board

The Jewelers Board of Trade (JBT) recognized Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company for its long-standing commitment to the trade organization. JBT also named Joel Matthies, chief information officer (CIO) at Jewelers Mutual, to the JBT board.


Junior Diamond Miners Remain Upbeat Despite Depressed Prices

Firestone Diamonds confirmed the "significant economic potential" of its BK11 project in Botswana. Even with prices that have halved during the past six months, it could generate annual revenues of $30 million with 60 percent to 70 percent operating margins. BK11 could be producing as soon as mid-2010, for an investment of only $7.5 million. African Diamonds has secured a mining license for the AK6 discovery in the face of opposition from partner De Beers, which had sought to mothball the project to conserve resources. DiamondCorp has restarted underground mining at the Lace kimberlite in South Africa. The company sold a small parcel of diamonds in March for $39.51 per carat. Petra Diamonds will test the market for larger stones when it auctions off the 7.03-carat Cullinan blue diamond, which carries an estimated value of $5.8 million to $8.5 million.

De Beers Reduces DRC Exploration

De Beers is planning to scale back its exploration operations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) due to the weak economic environment. When economic conditions improve, De Beers will assess new opportunities for prospective ground-holdings in the DRC. De Beers has reduced production by closing a number of its mines worldwide, and endeavored to cut expenses. As a result, the company said it will consolidate its focus on those areas that it believes have the highest potential for new economic discoveries.

South African Reserve Bank Blocks Sale of Angel Diamonds

The South African Reserve Bank has blocked the proposed sale of a stake in Angel Diamonds to Mantle Diamonds, according to Thabex, which owns 70 percent of Angel. The bank reasoned that Angel could not “be disposed of on extended credit terms” and that “the issue of Mantle ordinary share to Angel shareholders would constitute a loop structure.” Accordingly, shareholders are advised that Thabex will not proceed with the disposal of its interest in Angel, and a circular to shareholders will not be sent.

Gem Diamonds Freezes Gope Project

Gem Diamonds has put its Gope project in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve on the back burner, as the London-headquartered diamond producer seeks to cut its costs and stay afloat in the face of the global economic crisis. The company also suspended its debt-financing exercise — which was intended to raise the $500 million required for Gope's capital expenditure — because of lack of debt capital in global markets. Gem Diamonds acquired Gope Exploration Company, the holder of a retention license covering the Gope 25 kimberlite deposit in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve, from De Beers and Xstrata in May 2007 for $34.1 million.

Diavik Completes Successful Winter Road Resupply

Cold temperatures in Canada's Northwest Territories (NWT) helped maintain excellent conditions for the Tibbitt-to-Contwoyto seasonal Winter Road during the 2009 season, enabling Diavik Diamond Mines to successfully complete its resupply on March 22. The road was officially closed on March 25, with all users completing their winter resupply. This year, Diavik trucked 2,779 loads totaling 91,362 metric tons (100,709 tons) of fuel, cement, explosives, equipment and other materials, over the ice road. All of the road's users trucked a total of 5,377 loads, or 173,195 metric tons (190,915 tons), during the 2009 season.


Week ending April 8, 2009
Apr. 8 Apr. 2 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.755 0.740 0.015
$1 = Rupee 50.3 50.4 -0.1
$1 = Israel Shekel 4.14 4.16 -0.02
$1 = Rand 9.14 9.12 0.02
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.24 1.25 -0.01

Precious Metals
Gold $880.80 $904.00 -$23.20
Platinum $1,175.00 $1,155.00 $20.00

Stock Indexes Chng.
BSE 10,742.34 10,348.83 393.51 3.80%
Dow Jones Avg. 7,837.11 7,978.08 -140.97 -1.77%
FTSE 3,925.52 4,124.97 -199.45 -4.84%
Hang Seng 14,474.86 14,512.97 -38.11 -0.26%
S & P 500 825.16 834.38 -9.22 -1.11%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 605.43 620.23 -14.80 -2.39%

Birks & Mayors $0.45 $0.43 $0.02 4.65%
Blue Nile $33.40 $33.50 -$0.10 -0.30%
Charles & Colvard $0.32 $0.36 -$0.04 -11.11%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $0.84 $0.80 $0.04 5.00%
Fuqi International $4.86 $4.95 -$0.09 -1.82%
JCPenney $22.60 $21.93 $0.67 3.06%
Kohl's $45.12 $45.00 $0.12 0.27%
Lazare Kaplan $1.48 $1.12 $0.36 32.14%
LJ International $0.64 $0.71 -$0.07 -9.86%
Macy's $10.32 $10.16 $0.16 1.57%
Man Sang $2.46 $1.90 $0.56 29.47%
Movado Group $8.31 $8.18 $0.13 1.59%
Nordstrom $18.67 $18.40 $0.27 1.47%
Saks $2.19 $2.39 -$0.20 -8.37%
Signet $13.33 $13.26 $0.07 0.53%
Sotheby's $9.75 $10.28 -$0.53 -5.16%
Tiffany $22.49 $23.33 -$0.84 -3.60%
Wal-Mart $52.61 $53.63 -$1.02 -1.90%
Zale $3.51 $2.78 $0.73 26.26%

Bulgari €3.32 €3.39 -€0.07 -2.06%
Bijou Brigitte €81.01 €81.55 -€0.54 -0.66%
Esa €2.75 €2.23 €0.52 23.32%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,300.00 CHF 1,220.00 CHF 80.00 6.56%
LVMH €50.38 €51.29 -€0.91 -1.77%
Pinault P-R SA €54.85 €55.62 -€0.77 -1.38%
Richemont SA CHF 19.54 CHF 20.00 -CHF 0.46 -2.30%
Swatch Group CHF 149.90 CHF 151.10 -CHF 1.20 -0.79%
Theo Fennell (pence) 16.65 20.00 -€3.35 -16.75%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 10.86 8.57 2.29 26.72%
Gitanjali Gems 63.15 49.65 13.50 27.19%
Rajesh Exports 30.75 28.00 2.75 9.82%
Ren. Jewellery 23.85 21.15 2.70 12.77%
Su-Raj Diamonds 25.55 22.40 3.15 14.06%
Titan 804.60 812.60 -8.00 -0.98%
Zodiac JRD 11.55 11.00 0.55 5.00%
Suashish Diamonds 118.80 114.70 4.10 3.57%

Michael Hill NZD 0.53 NZD 0.48 NZD 0.05 10.42%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $9.64 $9.72 -$0.08 -0.82%
Archangel CAD 0.08 CAD 0.11 -CAD 0.03 -23.81%
Harry Winston CAD 3.45 CAD 3.89 -CAD 0.44 -11.31%
Mountain Province CAD 0.93 CAD 0.86 CAD 0.07 8.14%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.69 CAD 0.65 CAD 0.04 6.15%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.06 CAD 0.07 -CAD 0.01 -9.09%
Shore Gold CAD 0.27 CAD 0.28 -CAD 0.01 -3.57%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.17 CAD 0.21 -CAD 0.04 -19.51%
True North Gems CAD 0.10 CAD 0.10 CAD 0.00 0.00%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 19.5 22.0 -2.5 -11.36%
BHP Billiton 1,357.0 1,513.0 -156.0 -10.31%
Firestone Diamonds 19.5 22.3 -2.8 -12.56%
Gem Diamonds 122.3 125.0 -2.8 -2.20%
Gemfields 2.6 2.8 -0.2 -7.27%
Mano River 3.6 3.6 0.0 0.00%
Mwana Africa 4.4 4.5 -0.2 -3.33%
Namakwa Diamonds 22.5 20.5 2.0 9.76%
Petra Diamonds 32.0 25.0 7.0 28.00%
Rio Tinto plc 2,243.0 2,536.0 -293.0 -11.55%

Polished: Stable demand in the local market, with some buyer price resistance for certs against the higher asking prices.

-1 point: Fair demand: +$300 whites; $250-$350 TTLC.
-2 point: Fair demand: +$350 whites; $125-$150 TTLB; $300-$400 TTLC.
2-7 point: Good Demand: $350- $500 whites.
Fair demand: $100-$150 TTLB; $300-$400 TTLC.
8-18 point: Good Demand: +$650 whites.
Fair demand: $150-$200 TTLB & $350-$450 TTLC.
20 points: Fair demand: +$600 whites.
25 points: Fair demand: +$700 whites.
33 points: Good demand: +$900 whites.
50 points: Good demand: $1000-$1500 & +$2000 whites.
75 points: Good demand: +$2000 whites.
1 carat+: Good demand: +$2000 whites.

-3 point: Fair demand: $300-330 whites.
+3 point: Fair demand: $350-$380 whites.
+9-18 point: Fair demand: +14 pts $600-$650 whites.
20 point: Fair demand: $700-$750 whites.
25 point: Fair demand: $800-$850 whites.
50 point: Fair demand: $600-$1,000 whites.
75 point: Fair demand: $1,000-$1,200 whites.
1 carat+: Good demand: +$1,500 whites.

-6 point: Good demand: $400-$500 whites.
Fair demand: $250-$350 whites.
+7-18 point: Good demand: $600-$700 & +14 pts $800-$850 whites.
20 point: Fair demand: $900-$1,000 whites.
25 point: Fair demand: $1,100-$1,200 whites.
33 point: Fair demand: $1,300-$1,500 whites.
50 point: Fair demand: $1,600-$1,800 whites.
75 point: Fair demand: $1,100-$1,400 & $2,600-$2,800 whites.
1 carat+: Fair demand: +$1,200 whites.

Tapers & Baguettes
Fair demand: $600-$800 +5mm whites. $250-$325
2mm-2.5mm whites; $350-$400, 2.5mm-3mm whites;
$400-$450 3mm-4mm, $500-$600 4mm –
5mm & $175-$250 +2mm-3mm whites
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Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, April 24, 2009
News: Prices stabilizing as dealers regain confidence due to improving stock markets. Rough prices increasing as manufacturers re-enter the market. Healthy demand for goods under the carat as bridal market resists recession. Indian market improving with strong trend toward cash transactions. BHP Billiton FY3Q diamond production +53% to 951,000 cts. with higher yields at Ekati mine. Debswana predicts 50% fall in ‘09 production to 18 mil. cts. Christie’s New York jewels sale at $19 mil. with 84% sold by lot and a 30.02 ct. pear-shaped D, IF diamond selling for $4 mil ($133,000/ct.) Sotheby’s New York sells $11.1 mil. with 68% sold by lot. Gitanjali plans $60 mil. retail expansion in ‘09. LMVH 1Q revenues flat at $5.2 mil., but watch and jewelry sales -27% to $199 mil. PPR 1Q revenues -3% to $1.1 bil., but Gucci Group sales +5%. Belgium March polished exports -33% to $713 mil., rough imports -50% to $446 mil. India's March polished exports -24% to $1.1 bil., rough imports -57% to $311 mil.



"State of the Diamond Industry" by Martin Rapaport
Monday – June 1, 2009, 8:00-10:00 a.m.

Fair Trade Jewelry Conference, 1:00 – 4:30 p.m.

Venetian Hotel - San Polo Ballroom (Level 3)
RSVP: conference@Diamonds.Net

Limited Seating. Reserve your space now!

For Additional Rapaport JCK information visit


Rapaport International Diamond Conference
New York City - September 10, 2009

Save the Date
Reserve your space early. Email



Polished Diamond Tender – By Appointment Only
April 28-30, 2009

Large selection of melee, Rounds and Fancies, -6.5 to 1ct+,
from promotional to very fine qualities. Excellent opportunity
for diamond and jewelry manufacturers specializing in
inexpensive diamonds. Contact Myles Schakler at or +1-212-354-9800



Energetic motivated assistant manager
with diamond industry experience and excellent references.
University educated with fluent English, Gujrati, and computer skills.
Resume to:



"We're seeing a glimmer of improvement in foot traffic and sales. If we can all hang in there until we're into the May selling season, we should see a 'second wind' — the first being this past December. In the meantime, our business model for right now is: 1) Live out of present inventory (and accounts receivable) to the greatest extent possible, 2) reduce expenses, 3) use Internet as well as face-to-face marketing, 4) sales staff must use teamwork and turnovers to engage all customers, 5) move out old inventory that will not be replaced, and finally, 6) pay vendors as fast as possible; when the economy finally gets healthy again, they will remember it forever."

Gary Gordon
Samuel Gordon Jewelers, Oklahoma City


U.S. Mar. Jewelry CPI +3%

The consumer price index (CPI) for jewelry in the U.S. rose 3 percent year-on-year to 156.84 points during the month of March. The monthly index — which is based upon a reference point of average prices in 1986 set at 100 points — was just over one point higher than it was in February. For the watch and jewelry categories combined, the index for March increased 3 percent to 149.4 points.

Weekly U.S. Chain Store Sales Dip Slightly, Jewelry Sales Weaken

Weekly chain store sales fell 0.1 percent for the week ending April 18, 2009, compared with one year ago, according to the latest report published by the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs. Week-to-week sales slipped 0.4 percent, following three consecutive weekly sales increases. The books and jewelry categories were were particularly weak, said Michael P. Niemira, ICSC chief economist. ICSC Research anticipates that April sales will increase by 1 percent or more, year-over-year.

Gold Production Resumes in Zimbabwe

In response to high gold prices and relaxed restrictions on gold miners, Zimbabwean gold producers have started to reopen mines that became uneconomic over the last five years. Mwana Africa is restarting its Freda Rebecca mine, Caledonia Mining is reopening the Blanket mine, New Dawn Mining Corporation will start production at the Turk mine and Metallon Gold now plans to re-equip and reopen two of its five mines.

Ban Calls for Election Timetable in Cote d'Ivoire

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called upon the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) to set a realistic target date for presidential elections in Cote d'Ivoire and to make public a comprehensive electoral timeline with clear milestones. Significant progress has been made toward restoring the country to peace and security and a new government, elected by the end of 2009, would have the legitimacy to capitalize on these gains. The continued lack of a clearly set date for the elections, on the other hand, would adversely affect the future of the country and prolong the suffering of the people. The UN has embargoed diamonds and other items from the country until a free and fair presidential election has been held.

U.S. Consumer Optimism Surges But 65% Still Can't Make Ends Meet

While there is evidence that people feel more optimistic about the economy, 65 percent said it's difficult for them and their families to get ahead, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll. More than one-third know of a family member who recently lost a job, and more than 90 percent consider the economy an important issue, the highest ever in AP polling. And yet, the percentage of consumers saying the country is headed in the right direction rose to 48 percent, up from 40 percent in February; 44 percent say the nation is on the wrong track. Not since January 2004 has an AP survey found more "right direction" than "wrong direction" respondents.

Rapaport Weekly Broadcast

In the final installment in our series about what economic trends may bring for the U.S. in 2009 and beyond, Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing, explains how the luxury markets are faring during this recession. She explains how this recession is different from past bumps in the road, and what jewelers should be doing to weather the current downturn.


Belgium March Exports/Imports (YTD = Year to Date)

2009 % Change YTD 2009 % Change
($ Mil) from '08 ($ Mil) from '08

Polished Exports $713 -33% $2,030 -36%
Polished Imports $718 -36% $1,916 -37%
Net Polished Exports $(6) 90% $113 4%

Rough Imports $446 -50% $1,184 -59%
Rough Exports $440 -52% $1,089 -65%
Net Rough Imports $6 N/A $95 N/A

Net Diamond Account $12 45% $19 93%

India March Exports/Imports (YTD = Year to Date)

2009 % Change YTD 2009 % Change
($ Mil) from '08 ($ Mil) from '08

Polished Exports $1,140 -24% $2,774 -33%
Polished Imports $616 -17% $1,611 -12%
Net Polished Exports $524 -31% $1,163 -50%

Rough Imports $311 -57% $739 -71%
Rough Exports $60 -13% $165 -5%
Net Rough Imports $251 -61% $574 -76%

Net Diamond Account $273 151% $589 N/A


LVMH 1Q Revenue for Jewelry Segment -27%

LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton's first-quarter revenue was basically flat from a year ago, up 0.4 percent to $5.2 billion (EUR 4 billion). The watch and jewelry segment suffered, however, as revenue plunged 27 percent to $199 million (EUR 154 million). LVMH attributed the drop to global destocking by watch and jewelry retailers and to the considerable exposure of TAG Heuer and De Beers Diamond Jewellers to the U.S. market. In a separate statement, LVMH officially denied press reports claiming that the luxury goods company is in discussions to divest Moet Hennessy, its wines and spirits division.

PPR Revenue -3%, Gucci +5%

First-quarter sales for French retailer PPR fell almost 3 percent to $6.2 billion from the same period in 2008, and were down nearly 5 percent at constant exchange rates. Sales at Gucci Group rose 5 percent to $1.1 billion, but decreased by 3 percent at constant exchange rates. PPR's sales outside of France during the quarter grew to 63.6 percent of its total sales, from 62.4 percent one year ago. Watches and jewelry under the Gucci brand experienced difficult trading conditions in March.

Diamonds Hold Steady at Sotheby’s New York Auction

Fine signed and decorative jewelry sold well at Sotheby’s New York sale as no matter what happens in the economy strong prices are always realized for these items. The sale tallied up $11,098,638 and was sold 68 percent by lot and 55 percent by value. The top lot of the sale was a diamond necklace, which sold to a European private collector for $698,500. An Asian private collector nabbed the second top lot of the sale — a 13.98-carat GVS2 diamond ring for $482,500, or $34,514 per carat. Although the sale lacked the very special large DIF stones that generally sell at auction there was still movement in diamonds, but mostly in the under 10-carat range. Notably, sapphires, emeralds and natural pearls did well at this sale. Natural pearls are becoming a hot item at auction as buyers from the Gulf region scoop up these wonders of the sea prized for their rarity.

Diamonds Strong at Christie’s NY Auction

Christie’s New York Jewels sale fared remarkably well; the 208 lots — much fewer than usual for this time of year — garnered $19,293,675 against a presale estimate of $15 million. The sale was 84 percent sold by lot and 85 percent by value. The top lot of the day, a 30.02-carat pear-shaped D internally flawless type IIa diamond, sold to a private for $4,002,500, or $133,000 per carat, nicely surpassing its estimate of $2.5 million. Of the top 10 lots, nine were diamonds; the tenth was a Burmese ruby and diamond ring.

eBay 1Q Revenue -8%, Profits -29%

First-quarter revenue at eBay fell 8 percent to slightly more than $2 billion. This was primarily due to the decline of eBay's core Marketplaces business unit, consisting of eBay,, StubHub, Kijiji and other ecommerce sites, which recorded an 18 percent decline in revenue to $1.2 billion. Approximately 54 percent of Marketplaces revenue came from markets outside of the U.S. The company recorded net income of $357.1 million, a drop of 22 percent.

Bulgari Warns of 1Q Loss

Bulgari is likely to post a first-quarter net loss when it announces its results on May 12. Representatives of the luxury brand expect a slight year-on-year improvement in revenue by the end of 2009, however, and predict that this Christmas season will be better than 2008. Bulgari's net profit fell 45 percent to $107 million in 2008.

Chopard Reports Strong High-End Sales

Caroline Gruosi-Scheufele, Chopard's copresident, acknowledged that Chopard is feeling the impact of the economic crisis, but not disastrously and not across the board. The $25,000 to $50,000 range is hurting, but the high end of the market, pieces over $100,000 is holding strong. Even though the crisis is causing some companies, and their customers, to lower their profiles, Gruosi-Scheufele said that she believed that it was more important than ever for Chopard to promote its brand.

Bidz Sells Its Colibri Assets to Richline sold all of the intellectual property and tools that it bought from the Colibri Group to Richline Group. The company sold the trademarks of the brands Krementz, Van Dell, Shiman, Dolan & Bullock, Taylor Avedon, Angelite, Skal, Skalet, Magical Years, Little Miss Pride, Sideways, Darling Diamonds, Fingerprint Locket and others, which it acquired during Colibri's bankruptcy auction. agreed in principle to buy future closeouts from Richline on a nonexclusive basis. The company estimated the value of the purchased inventory at approximately $6 million.

Arthur Diamonds Files Chpt. 7

Arthur Diamonds of Los Angeles, California, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in March. As of February 23, 2009, the company listed assets of $317,483, of which $41,287 consisted of inventory and $275,494 of accounts receivable. However, the court filing explains that $241,986 of these receivables appear to be uncollectible. Arthur Diamonds' liabilities were listed at $756,409.

Deutsche Bank Downgrades Blue Nile

Deutsche Bank downgraded Blue Nile shares to "Sell" from "Hold." While falling diamond prices have helped Blue Nile save money, consumer demand for jewelry is slowing. The Seattle-based ecommerce site's page views are dropping, while consumers' access to the credit necessary to buy jewelry is still tightening, and the company's "underinvestment" in its international division could hurt future growth. Deutsche Bank maintained an $18 price target on the stock. Shares of Blue Nile are up 70 percent so far in 2009 after touching a low of $18.34.

Recession Forces Jewelers to Explore Varied Services

As customers rein in spending on jewelry, jewelers are diversifying to keep their businesses going during the recession. Some are doing more custom work and repairs. One retailer estimated that his repair business had increased about 15 percent as more people are getting pieces repaired rather than buying new. Other retailers are diversifying by buying and reselling gold. The profit on buying gold, about 10 percent, is smaller than that on estate jewelry, but the turnaround time is quicker.

India's Jewelry Sector to Shrink but Two Retailers Grow

The market size of India's gem and jewelry segment is likely to shrink 4 percent to $22.3 billion in 2009, according to the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham). Meanwhile, The Retailer magazine has listed two jewelers, Orra and Sia, on its list of India's 100 Best Retailers for 2009, based upon their size, operations and future growth plans, along with their potential for growth during 2010 and beyond. Orra plans to launch 13 outlets during 2009, focusing on large-format stores with international standards. Sia plans to launch 20 outlets during 2009.

Gitanjali Expects Higher Gold Sales During Akshaya Tritiya

Gitanjali Group is aiming to sell 400 kilograms (882 pounds) of gold coins during Akshaya Tritiya, an auspicious day for buying precious metals. Sales of gold coins in India are expected to rise by 40 percent to 7 to 8 metric tons (7.7 to 8.8 tons) during Akshaya Tritiya, which falls on April 27 this year. In dollar terms, gold has fallen 7 percent in the past month.

TD Retail Offers LJC Card Program to U.S. Jewelers

TD Retail Card Services has introduced the L.J.C. Card program — revolving private-label consumer credit card that can be used for purchases of products or services at any participating merchant — to independent U.S. jewelers and fashion and accessories retailers. Merchants opening an account for an individual consumer can have their store name embossed on the card. Retailers can offer customers special financing options, including three-, six- and 12-month same-as-cash payment plans, as well as two additional low-APR programs. TD Retail Card Services bought the rights to operate a private-label credit card portfolio for Birks & Mayors in January.

Austin & Warburton to Shift All Business to the Web

A strong wholesale business and a burgeoning online retail presence have allowed the owners of 50-year-old Austin & Warburton Fine Jewelers in Ann Arbor, Michigan, to close its storefront and serve its custom jewelry customers from a nonpublic manufacturing operation and office. The company runs two ecommerce websites, and The move will drop the company's overhead costs by 90 percent.

Gitanjali To Expand, Joins with MMTC

Gitanjali Group unveiled a joint venture with state-owned MMTC, India's largest gold trader, to make gold and diamond jewelry. The company also announced a $59.5 million plan to triple the number of its stores to 450 locations. Gitanjali is targeting total sales of $1.3 billion in fiscal 2009-10, up from $992.5 million in fiscal 2008-09.

Devji Celebrates Solitaire Week in Bahrain

Devji, a Bahrain-based jeweler, is celebrating its "solitaire week" with a promotion, giving customers a chance to buy certified solitaire diamonds at any Devji outlet at very competitive prices until Monday.

Naledi Adds Two S. African Diamond Jewelry Designers

The Naledi Jewelry Collection introduced two new contributing designers and their collections: The Naledi Love Letter Collection created by Daniel Jacobs of Stellenbosch, South Africa, and The Circle Of Life Collection by Linki Van Zyl of Pretoria, South Africa. The collections were exhibited at this past week's Instore Show in Chicago, and will be shown at the JCK Show in Las Vegas. The diamonds used in the Naledi Collection are mined in Botswana and manufactured at the group's diamond-cutting factory in Gaborone.


JAPAC Expands Board, Initiates Multi-Year Fundraising Campaign

The Jewelers of America Political Action Committee (JAPAC) expanded its board of directors and embarked on a two-year drive to raise funds from Jewelers of America members. Newly appointed board members include:

John Hayes, Goodman’s Jewelers, Madison, Wisconsin
Artie Bennos, Simms II Jewelers, Winchester, Massachusetts
Woody Justice, Justice Jewelers, Springfield, Missouri
Carolyn Pope, Crews Jewelry, Grandview, Missouri
Jeffrey Corey, Days Jewelers, Waterville, Maine
Peter Engel, Fred Meyer Jewelers, Portland, Oregon
Scot Congress, Congress Jewelers, Sanibel Island, Florida

WJA to Honor von Furstenberg, Runci, GIA in July

The Women’s Jewelry Association (WJA) will hold its annual awards for excellence gala July 27, 2009, at Pier 60 in New York City. The group plans to honor fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg with its 2009 “Hall of Fame Lifetime Achievement” award and Matt Runci, president of Jewelers of America, with the 2009 “Ben Kaiser Award.” WJA will also honor the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) with its inaugural “Corporate Award for Excellence.”

Du Plessis Becomes Chair of Rio Tinto's Board

Jan du Plessis assumed the role of chairman of the board of Rio Tinto. He joined the board as a nonexecutive director on September 1, 2008, and his appointment as chairman was announced on March 18, 2009. Du Plessis replaces Paul Skinner, who retired at the conclusion of the Rio Tinto Limited annual general meeting Monday.

Finlay Promotes Knudsen to VP of Merchandising, Marketing

Finlay Enterprises promoted Karin Knudsen to executive vice president of merchandising and marketing for Finlay Jewelry. She replaces Leslie A. Philip, who plans to retire on May 26, 2009. Finlay also announced that Joseph M. Melvin, executive vice president and chief operating officer (COO) plans to retire as of June 30, 2009.

A. Jaffe Appoints Midwest Sales Manager

Gail Kenny joined A. Jaffe, taking on the role of Midwest regional sales manager. Kenny has more than 25 years of experience in the jewelry industry. She held the position of regional sales director at Tag Heuer for 10 years, and spent 15 years in various retail segments at Henry Birks, including bridal sales and merchandising. Kenny has held positions at Carl F. Bucherer Fine Timepieces, Escada Fine Jewelry, Bulgari and, recently, at Penny Preville.


Three Young Diamond Merchants Found Murdered

Three young diamond merchants from Bangalore, India — Mir Saini Abbas, Shahur Raza and Zahir Abbas, aged between 22 and 25 — were allegedly strangled to death and their bodies buried on the banks of the Banas river. The men came to the area to sell diamonds worth over $30,000 (INR 1.5 million), which are thought to have been stolen. The trio was also carrying $30,000 (INR 1.5 million) cash, which is also missing. A murder charge has been registered against unknown persons.

Iraq Orders Hunt for Jewelry Store Gunmen

Iraq's prime minister ordered the hunt to be stepped up for the gunmen behind the deadly robberies of two jewelery shops run by Iraq's tiny Sabean minority. The attacks, in which a total of seven people, including three Sabean goldsmiths, were killed, took place on Sunday in western Baghdad. Security forces have arrested four of those behind the robberies, according to authorities, but other suspects are on the run.

Second Brother Gets Life for Double Murder in Jewelry Store

The second of two Muskegon Heights, Michigan, brothers has received a mandatory sentence of life in prison with no possibility of parole, in connection with the slaying of 61-year-old Robert Karell, owner of R.K. Jewelers in downtown Grand Haven, and 77-year-old customer Louis Paparella of Roosevelt Park in July. Anderson's brother, Dimitri, was convicted of the same charges in February and also sentenced to life without parole.

FBI Links Thefts of Super Bowl Rings, Brinks Coins

The heist of the New York Giants' Super Bowl rings from an Attleboro, Massachusetts, jewelry plant in 2008 and the theft of four tons of coins from a Brinks armored car facility in Ohio in January appear to be the work of the same crew, according to the FBI. The two "sophisticated and well-planned" crimes showed similar methods, including entry by means of holes the thieves cut in buildings' rooftops. Brinks is offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to their capture.

Florida Bill Seeks to Stop Theives from Mailing In Gold

In an attempt to prevent thieves from abusing mail-in services, a law has been drafted in Florida that would require companies that offer cash for mailed-in gold jewelry to photograph all jewelry they buy, to hold all pieces for 10 days, and to get sellers' driver's license numbers and sworn statements that they own the items they are selling. The bill has passed the Florida State Senate and is awaiting approval by the House. The mail-in companies claim, however, that stolen goods account for no more than a fraction of one percent of their business, and that the proposed restrictions are the result of pressure from pawn dealers and secondhand shops that are angry about mail-order businesses cutting into their market.

WJA Invites Design Competition Entries for DIVA Gives Back

The Women’s Jewelry Association (WJA) invites jewelry designers to submit entries for its DIVA Gives Back design competition. The entry deadline is May 4, 2009, and awards will be announced during the WJA DIVA Awards Party on June 1 at Lavo in Las Vegas’ Palazzo Hotel. The competition is open to all women.

Muscat International Jewelry Exhibition Held

The Muscat International Jewelry Exhibition (IJEX) was held at the Oman International Exhibition Centre and was reportedly unaffected by the global economic crisis. The five-day exhibition, which ran from April 15 to 19, was organized in collaboration with Sama Expo of Bahrain. Over 100 companies, representing 15 countries, participated, exhibiting jewelry, gemstones, gold, watches, fashioned silver, pearls, diamonds and white gold.

CIBJO Posts 2009 Congress Program Online

CIBJO, the World Jewellery Confederation, has posted its program for the upcoming 2009 CIBJO Congress online at

DMCC Vault Opens for Operation

The Dubai Multi Commodities Centre's (DMCC) new vault, intended for both short- and long-term storage of precious metals and other high-value products, will be operational starting on April 26, 2009. The vault will be open to local and international banks, corporates, high net-worth individuals and DMCC members. DMCC has appointed Brink's Global Services for the day-to-day operations and management of the new vault.


BHP Billiton 3Q Diamond Production +53%

BHP Billiton’s third-quarter diamond production rose 53 percent to 951,000 carats, due in part to higher grades achieved at Ekati. The amount of ore processed increased 29 percent to 1.3 million metric tons (1.4 million tons). Production at the mine fell 7 percent to 2.3 million carats in the nine months through March, despite a 10 percent rise in the amount of ore processed.

Debswana to Cut 2009 Production by 60%

Debswana plans to cut production by more than 60 percent, even as the company resumes production at its three mines. Production for this year will be in the region of 15 million carats. The Diamond Trading Company Botswana (DTCB) has suggested that it they might only be able to sell between 18 and 20 million carats. Debswana is cutting back to even less than that because the company has inventory remaining from weak sales in December and November.

Angolan Mine Minister Seeks New Investors

Makenda Ambroise, Angola’s mining minister, urged new investors to come to Angola to help the country’s mining sector diversify and become less dependent on diamonds. Angola plans to explore for iron and gold, as well as materials that can be used in the construction sector. Sales of Angolan gems recently surpassed $70 million per month, up from around $25 million at the start of the year, according to the minister, but he lowered Angola's 2009 diamond production target to around 9 million carats — around the same as in 2008 — from a previous estimate of around 10 million.

Gemstone Duel Continues on the AIM

This past Thursday, the latest chapter in the takeover battle between Gemfields Resources and Tanzanite One drew to a close, when Tanzanite won what it is calling "overwhelming shareholder approval" for resolutions to increase its authorized share capital and amend its bylaws. Most of the votes cast in favor of the resolutions, however, were attached to nil-paid, unlisted "B shares" with temporary voting rights that expire this Friday, issued by the company after Gemfields embarked on its bid a year ago. Gemfields called this a deblorable way of overriding the company's shareholders, but Gemfields' original takeover bid — in which it offered to buy shares from individuals rather than make a formal offer — showed a similar unconcern for shareholders' rights. Both companies were able to circumvent normal regulations because Tanzanite One is incorporated in Bermuda.

Diavik Exceeded '08 Northern Apprentice Commitment

Diavik Diamond Mines, both directly and through contractors, employed 19 northern and Aboriginal apprentices in 2008, exceeding its commitment to employ between eight and 18. Four northerners successfully completed their apprenticeships, making 17 Diavik apprentices who have achieved journeyperson certification. Diavik's operational workforce averaged 808; of these, 540 were priority-hire Aboriginal and northern non-Aboriginal workers.


For the week ending April 23, 2009

Apr. 23 Apr. 16 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.768 0.759 0.009
$1 = Rupee 50.1 49.8 0.3
$1 = Israel Shekel 4.26 4.18 0.08
$1 = Rand 8.96 8.92 0.04
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.24 1.21 0.03

Precious Metals
Gold $903.30 $875.70 $27.60
Platinum $1,182.00 $1,207.00 -$25.00

Stock Indexes Chng.
BSE 11,134.99 10,947.40 187.59 1.71%
Dow Jones Avg. 7,957.06 8,125.43 -168.37 -2.07%
FTSE 4,018.23 4,052.98 -34.75 -0.86%
Hang Seng 15,214.46 15,582.99 -368.53 -2.36%
S & P 500 851.92 856.30 -4.38 -0.51%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 720.21 716.94 3.27 0.46%

Birks & Mayors $0.44 $0.42 $0.02 4.76%
Blue Nile $38.65 $39.39 -$0.74 -1.88%
Charles & Colvard $0.41 $0.41 $0.00 1.23%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $1.10 $0.86 $0.24 27.91%
Fuqi International $4.96 $5.09 -$0.13 -2.55%
JCPenney $26.68 $26.19 $0.49 1.87%
Kohl's $44.30 $45.02 -$0.72 -1.60%
Lazare Kaplan $1.21 $1.17 $0.04 3.42%
LJ International $1.13 $1.10 $0.03 2.73%
Macy's $12.62 $12.52 $0.10 0.80%
Man Sang $2.15 $2.32 -$0.17 -7.33%
Movado Group $8.59 $6.77 $1.82 26.88%
Nordstrom $21.14 $21.24 -$0.10 -0.47%
Saks $4.30 $3.10 $1.20 38.71%
Signet $16.24 $15.04 $1.20 7.98%
Sotheby's $9.95 $9.96 -$0.01 -0.10%
Tiffany $26.80 $26.50 $0.30 1.13%
Wal-Mart $48.86 $50.78 -$1.92 -3.78%
Zale $4.41 $5.04 -$0.63 -12.50%

Bulgari €3.93 €4.01 -€0.08 -2.00%
Bijou Brigitte €79.66 €88.49 -€8.83 -9.98%
Esa €3.10 €3.29 -€0.19 -5.78%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,180.00 CHF 1,300.00 -CHF 120.00 -9.23%
LVMH €54.35 €53.06 €1.29 2.43%
Pinault P-R SA €57.74 €58.37 -€0.63 -1.08%
Richemont SA CHF 20.70 CHF 21.12 -CHF 0.42 -1.99%
Swatch Group CHF 161.60 CHF 167.00 -CHF 5.40 -3.23%
Theo Fennell (pence) 16.70 18.00 -€1.30 -7.22%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 11.87 12.95 -1.08 -8.34%
Gitanjali Gems 67.00 84.50 -17.50 -20.71%
Rajesh Exports 28.35 32.45 -4.10 -12.63%
Ren. Jewellery 27.00 29.55 -2.55 -8.63%
Su-Raj Diamonds 26.50 28.25 -1.75 -6.19%
Titan 763.15 797.65 -34.50 -4.33%
Zodiac JRD 12.50 12.50 0.00 0.00%
Suashish Diamonds 140.65 140.00 0.65 0.46%

Michael Hill NZD 0.54 NZD 0.58 -NZD 0.04 -6.90%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $9.87 $10.66 -$0.79 -7.41%
Archangel CAD 0.08 CAD 0.08 CAD 0.00 0.00%
Harry Winston CAD 5.15 CAD 5.81 -CAD 0.66 -11.36%
Mountain Province CAD 1.29 CAD 1.03 CAD 0.26 25.24%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.63 CAD 0.56 CAD 0.07 12.50%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.05 CAD 0.06 -CAD 0.01 -16.67%
Shore Gold CAD 0.42 CAD 0.42 CAD 0.00 0.00%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.18 CAD 0.19 -CAD 0.01 -5.26%
True North Gems CAD 0.10 CAD 0.11 -CAD 0.02 -13.64%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 22.5 22.0 0.5 2.27%
BHP Billiton 1,385.0 1,398.0 -13.0 -0.93%
Firestone Diamonds 24.0 23.4 0.6 2.56%
Gem Diamonds 130.0 132.0 -2.0 -1.52%
Gemfields 4.3 3.6 0.7 19.72%
Mano River 4.3 3.8 0.5 13.33%
Mwana Africa 4.6 6.1 -1.5 -24.63%
Namakwa Diamonds 29.5 23.8 5.8 24.21%
Petra Diamonds 40.0 35.5 4.5 12.68%
Rio Tinto plc 2,571.0 2,474.0 97.0 3.92%

Múdry sa teší objaveniu pravdy, hlupák falošnosti.
Registrovaný uživatel
Lonsdaleit (pomenovaný na počesť Kathleen Lonsdale), nazývaný aj šesťhranný diamant v odkaze na tvar kryštalickej štruktúry, je alotrop uhlíka s hexagonálnou mriežkou. V prírode sa vyskytuje zriedka, poznáme ho z meteoritov. Lonsdaleit bol prvýkrát zistený v Canyon Diablo, z meteoritu v kráteri Barringer (tiež známy ako kráter Meteor) v Arizone. Bol objavený v roku 1967. Lonsdaleit sa objavuje ako mikroskopické kryštály sa spájané s diamantom z meteoritu v Canyon Diablo; Kennyho meteoritom, Nové Mexiko, a meteoritom Allan Hills (ALH) 77283, Victoria Land, Antarctica. Bol tiež hlásený z Tunguska, Rusko.

Hexagonálny diamant bol tiež syntetizovaný v laboratóriu, ešte predtým, ako bol objavený v prírode v roku 1967. Je priesvitný, nahnedlej alebo žltej farby a má index lomu 2,40 až 2,41, čo je hustota 3,2 - 3,3 a tvrdosť 7-8 (11). V Mohsovej stupnici tvrdosi má diamant stupeň 10; nižšia tvrdosť lonsdaleitu je hlavne spôsobená nečistotou a nedokonalosťou v prírode sa vyskytujúceho materiálu.

V prípade čistej vzorky by mohol byť o 58% tvrdší ako diamant. Vo februári 2009 vedci z univerzity v Nevade a na univerzite v Šanghaji ohlásili simulácie, ktoré ukazujú, že sa veľmi že by mohol odolávať tlakom 152 GPa, teda oveľa vyšším ako diamant, ktorý za tých istých podmienok odolá 97 GPa.
Múdry sa teší objaveniu pravdy, hlupák falošnosti.
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Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, May 01, 2009
News: Markets remain quiet after holidays with short week in India due to elections. Trade confidence has improved as prices for goods under 2 carat have stabilized, but concerns remain about the future. Prices on larger stones still under pressure due to weak demand, as evidenced by exceptionally poor Russian tender results. India demand stable for SI and imperfect goods, with shortages in G-I colors. Rough sales and process have increased from all time lows as some large Indian factories resume production. De Beers 1Q production -91% to 1.1 million carats, and expects 5-10% drop in 2009 global retail sales. Rio Tinto reports blue diamond tender exceeds expectations with record prices. ALROSA plans new production pipes. Amazon 1Q profits +24% to $177 mil., sales +18% to $4.9 bil. Swiss watch exports -27% to $791 mil in March. Three Bangalore diamond dealers murdered, three brokers arrested. S. Africa’s Jacob Zuma wins majority vote in presidential election. Simcha Lustig, leader of Israeli diamond industry passes away at 72.



"State of the Diamond Industry" by Martin Rapaport
Monday, June 1, 2009, 8:00-10:00 a.m.

Fair Trade Jewelry Conference, 1:00 - 4:30 p.m.

Venetian Hotel - San Polo Ballroom (Level 3)
RSVP: conference@diamonds.Net

Limited Seating. Reserve your space now!

For Additional Rapaport JCK information visit


Rapaport International Diamond Conference
New York City - September 10, 2009

Save the Date
Reserve your space early. Email



Energetic motivated assistant manager
with diamond industry experience and excellent references.
University-educated with fluent English, Gujrati and computer skills.
Resume to:



"People are coming in and so far this year they're spending money, they're spending in different areas. They're spending money on women's beauty, cosmetics, they're spending money on shoes, handbags, men's clothing, women's high street fashion, our Wonder Room, which is a collection of fantastic products, anything from watches to phones to jewelry and diamonds. That business is really, really performing very strongly in 2009."

Paul Kelly
Chief Executive of Selfridges in London


De Beers 1Q Production -91%

De Beers production fell 91 percent in the first quarter of 2009, to 1.1 million carats, after the company scaled back its mining in line with the weakened demand for rough diamonds. Anglo American, which owns 45 percent of De Beers, expects production to ramp up again in the second quarter as many of its mines come back on stream.

U.S. Weekly Retail Sales -2%

Retailers experienced a drop in sales of 1.7 percent from one year ago for the week that ended April 25, 2009, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs. The warm weather afforded consumers plenty of reasons to turn their attention to other activities, the groups concluded. The drop in chain store sales was the steepest since the week that ended February 7. For April, ICSC Research expects that sales will increase by 1 percent or more, inflated by the calendar-shift from when Easter fell out in each year.

Consumer Spending Drops, U.S. GDP Measures Steep Decline

U.S. consumer spending dropped by 0.2 percent in March, the first fall in three months, and worse than economists had expected. Incomes, reflecting the continued massive wave of layoffs, dropped by 0.3 percent. The Federal Reserve announced on Wednesday that it will keep rates low for the foreseeable future. The overall economy, as measured by the gross domestic product (GDP), fell at an annual rate of 6.1 percent in the first three months of the year.

Renewed Demand in India Brings Workers Back

After a downturn that saw more than 5,000 units closing shop and close to 200,000 workers laid off in Surat alone, the Indian diamond industry is now looking to hire about 50,000 people. The industry was hampered by huge inventories, but a 20 percent surge in demand for polished stones from the U.S., Europe and Asia has used up these stocks, and as many as 300 units have reopened. Some 40 companies have announced increases of more than 10 percent in workers' salaries.

Brutal Murder of Brokers was Well-Planned

The murder of three diamond brokers, Shauhar Raza, Shani Abbas and Zabbir Abbas in Palanpur was a cold-blooded, meticulously planned crime, as indicated by evidence that their graves were dug before they were killed. Ishwar Rajput, a diamond broker, was apprehended by the Banaskantha police this past week, and Dhansinh Rajput and Lala Raval were arrested the next day. The accused apparently invited the brokers to Mangad with promises of a gala party, whereupon they murdered them and burnt their clothes and luggage. Ishwar took diamonds and gems worth $30,000 (INR 1.5 million), and $30,000 (INR 1.5 million) in cash was distributed among the thieves. Two suspects are still at large.

EU Renews Sanctions on Myanmar

European Union (EU) foreign ministers extended sanctions against Myanmar for another year Monday to push for democratic change, and called on Myanmar's military regime to take steps to make planned 2010 elections "credible" and "inclusive." The sanctions were put in place in 2006 to protest the junta's crackdown on prodemocracy groups. The EU added other economic sanctions in 2007, including a ban on imports of timber, gemstones and precious metals from Myanmar. The sanctions have had little effect on the behavior of Myanmar's military, which has held power since 1962. David Miliband, the British foreign secretary, said that the EU had to keep pressure on Myanmar's military-led regime to introduce democratic reforms.

South Africa Bids to Beat Diamond Sector Slowdown

The Diamond Council of South Africa has brought together a working group that includes industry, the government, banks and labor, to find ways to ensure the survival of diamond cutters, polishers and dealers under crisis conditions and to grow the industry's global market share. The group has identified the need to address liquidity pressures, with assistance from banks and the government, or through some form of tax relief. The working group made a comparative study of leading cutting and polishing countries and looked at ways to grow demand and develop the right local skills.

Rapaport Weekly Broadcast

Everything was coming up platinum in Manhattan for this broadcast, recorded on spring preview day at Platinum Guild International. Jewelry style guru Michael O'Connor discusses the latest trends in the world of platinum and diamonds.


Amazon Profits Soar But Reports Cautious Outlook Inc. reported that its net income increased 24 percent to $177 million in the first quarter, and that sales surged 18 percent to $4.9 billion. Amazon's growth was fueled in part by aggressive discounting, causing some analysts to worry how it would affect their bottom line. But Amazon reported operating margins for the quarter of 6.6 percent, among the highest the company has reported in recent years. Looking ahead, company noted that its operating income could decline between 12 percent and 49 percent in the current quarter.

Christie's Dubai Jewels Sale Tops $4M

Jewelry belonging to Umm Kulthum, a legendary Egyptian singer, sold for $118,000 at a Christie's auction in Dubai on Tuesday night. The entire sale reached just over $4 million, with 76 percent sold by lot. The highlight of the sale was a kite-shaped, 5.01-carat, D, internally flawless diamond pendant, which sold for $194,500 to a Middle Eastern private collector. The number of Middle Eastern buyers at Christie's auctions globally has risen 400 percent since 2004.

Swiss Watch Exports -27% in March

Swiss watch exports fell 27 percent in March to $791.3 million (CHF 914.4 million), according to the Swiss Watch Federation, with the high-end market particularly hard-hit. There were declines in almost all of the federation's markets for the month, with exports to Hong Kong, Switzerland’s largest market, falling by 29 percent. Exports to the U.S. fell by half for the second consecutive month. Switzerland’s watch exports in the first quarter fell 24 percent to $2.5 billion (CHF 2.9 billion).

De Beers Expects 5-10% Drop in 2009 Retail Sales

Against the backdrop of the global slowdown, De Beers has decided to cut its production by 40 to 50 percent this year. According to Varda Shine, managing director of the Diamond Trading Company (DTC), demand at the retail counter should experience a drop of between 5 and 10 percent this year, but the fall in supplies will be much larger, leading to improved stability in the industry. The company has also decided to cut costs by 47 percent and to close some of its less-viable mines. Shine noted that DTC has revised prices of rough diamonds downward, but refused to divulge price details.

IBISWorld Predicts Mother's Day Jewelry Sales -19%

IBISWorld predicted a 19 percent drop in jewelry sales this Mother's Day to $2.3 billion. The market analysts expect an overall spending decrease of 15 percent to $12.9 billion. IBISWorld concluded that those who shop for mom will stay away from electronics stores, jewelry stores and department stores, downgrading their gift purchases to lower-priced merchandise and services. Earlier in April, the National Retail Federation released its Mother's Day projections, estimating jewelry spending at $2.3 billion and total spending at about $14 billion.

M.J. Christensen Begins Las Vegas Consolidation Sale

Jeweler M.J. Christensen is offering discounts of as much as 70 percent as part of an eight-week consolidation sale at all four of its Las Vegas, Nevada, stores. M.J. Christensen is closing its Galleria Mall location in nearby Henderson, but it will continue operating its three other freestanding stores in the area. The inventory up for sale is valued at more than $10 million. The sale is being managed by liquidators Buxbaum Jewelry Advisors. The consolidation is the largest in the company's 70-year history.

Man Sang Holdings Issues Profit Warning

Man Sang Holdings issued a warning that it expects to record a loss for its fiscal year that ended on March 31, 2009. The company attributed the projected loss to the declining real estate markets in Hong Kong and China. Man Sang Holdings, which deals both in pearls and jewelry products and in real estate development and leasing, is required to report any decreases in the fair value of the group’s investment properties.

Zalemark, M&L Jewelry Sign Agreement to Merge

Zalemark Holding Company signed a letter of intent to merge M & L Jewelry Company into Zalemark. The merger is subject to negotiation and execution of binding definitive documents. M & L Jewelry, a 33-year-old company based in Los Angeles, California, has a design and manufacturing facility in Guangzhou, China.

Good Demand for Diamond Jewelry During Akshaya Tritiya

Akshaya Tritiya, an auspicious occasion for buying gold, is seeing many customers opting for diamonds rather than gold. As gold prices soar, jewelers are promoting diamond jewelry, feeding a gradual shift in Indian consumer preference towards diamonds. Jewelers are offering promotions and discounts to take advantage of the growing market. Nonetheless, some gold shops reported that sales during the Akshaya Tritiya festival were as much as 20 times higher than on an average day. The majority of the sales were in the leading gold-houses such as Bheema, Alukkas and Josco, while small shops remained deserted — a result of the marketing strategies of the bigger stores, which included promotional offers, discounts and hallmarked jewelry.

Abramov Launches Lamont in Beverly Hills

Monty Abramov launched the Lamont diamond jewelry brand, which produces, under his direction, heirloom and unique diamond jewelry designs and diamond bridal jewelry. The collection highlights round, fancy shapes and natural colored diamonds ranging from 1 carat to more than 20 carats. The first piece in the Lamont collection is a classic 10-carat pear shape and baguette diamond ring set in platinum. Lamont will preview collections, by appointment only, to collectors and to select prominent independent retailers in the U.S. Lamont will launch globally at the Hong Kong Jewellery & Watch Show on September 23, 2009.

Damas Unveils Two Luxury Timepieces for Women

Damas unveiled two luxury timepieces for women from Jaquet Droz — the Date Astrale and the L'Heure Céleste. The watches, from the brand's Hommage Paris 1785 series, are crafted in 18-karat white gold, diamonds and mother-of-pearl. The Date Astrale has an off-center subdial at 2 o'clock, and its face blends mother-of-pearl and diamonds, mounted on the horns and bezel. Its dial is traversed by a diamond indicating the date. The L'Heure Céleste has a dial that displays a virgin canvas lacquered in black, against which a galaxy of planets in white gold are set with diamonds. Handcrafted in three dimensions, natural light illuminates its dial from unusual angles. Each watch is available in a "numerus clausus" limited edition of eight.

Jewelry Scam Prompts Consumer Warning in Oregon

The attorney general of Oregon warned consumers about a jewelry scam: Consumers have reported receiving an offer that looks like a green U.S. Postal Service tracking notice, saying that $50 worth of jewelry has been sent to the recipient but that a processing fee of $6.95 is required to receive it. The so-called pearl-and-diamond "gold-toned" necklace that the consumer receives has been valued at about $1. The card carries an almost invisible disclaimer that the promotion is not affiliated with the postal service. The company involved, Consumer Clearinghouse Distributors, owned by Emerson Direct of Naples, Florida, has been investigated in the past.

Birmingham Assay Office Warns About Gold Hallmark Checks

The Birmingham Assay Office in the U.K. reminded jewelers that hallmarking inspections are being carried out across the country. Spot checks in Birmingham and Southall showed that eight out of 10 items were not hallmarked. U.K. law states that any item of gold weighing more than 1 gram must be hallmarked. Stores are also required to display a dealers notice that explains hallmarking. Penalties for violating hallmarking law include fines of up to GBP 5,000 ($7,350) for each unmarked item or a maximum of two years in prison. The Assay office can hallmark items in 24 hours in urgent cases, and the group also provides dealers notices.

Cartier to Display Jewels of Famous for Centenary

Cartier will take a populist tack when celebrating its U.S. centenary. The jewelry house has collected pieces commissioned over the last century by the rich and famous, and has installed them in its Fifth Avenue flagship for "Cartier...100 Years of Passion and Free Spirit in America," opening May 1. The show is replete with objects like the Duchess of Windsor's lorgnette and the diamond-and-panther brooch created for the Woolworth heiress Barbara Hutton.

Antwerpsche Diamantkring Waives Entrance Fees for Two Months

The Antwerpsche Diamantkring cvba (ADK) is waiving the fee for entrance to its exchange hall during May and June 2009 for diamantaires who are not members of Belgian bourses but who hold a 2009 membership in a bourse affiliated with the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB). The decision was taken to stimulate trade in the current difficult economy. The ADK is one of four diamond exchanges located in Antwerp, and is the world's only bourse with an exchange hall dedicated to the rough trade.


Cavalieri Tells Peru's Jewelry Sector to Adopt CSR

Gaetano Cavalieri, president of the World Jewellery Confederation (CIBJO), called upon Peru's jewelry sector to adopt strict standards of corporate social responsibility in order that they be properly integrated in the global market. Before addressing an international conference on jewelry in Peru, Cavalieri met with President Alan Garcia Perez to discuss the development of Peru's jewelry industry.

Simcha Lustig Passes Away

Simcha Lustig passed away on Monday after a short illness at age 72. Lustig hailed from one of the founding families of the Israeli diamond industry, and was a member of the board of directors of the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) for 18 years. Lustig served as vice president of the IDE and as Israel’s representative on a multinational marketing committee established by the Diamond Trading Company (DTC). He was chairman of the Israel Diamond Institute Group of Companies (IDI) from 2003 to 2006. In 2008, Lustig received the Israel Diamond Industry Dignitary Award.

International Speakers Bureau Signs Simmons

Russell Simmons has signed with the International Speakers Bureau (iSB). As part of the exclusive alliance between the two, iSB will exclusively represent Simmons in booking speaking engagements. Simmons is co-owner of the Simmons Jewelry Company. He created the Diamond Empowerment Fund (D.E.F.), a nonprofit organization that raises money for education initiatives that develop and empower economically disadvantaged people in African nations where diamonds are a natural resource.

Gem-A's Ogden to Speak at ICA Congress in China

Jack Ogden, chief executive officer (CEO) of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A), will be addressing the 13th International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA) Congress in Panyu, China, May 5 to 10, 2009. This event, the largest jewelry industry conference ever to be held in China, will provide an international forum for discussing the issues facing the colored gemstone and jewelry industry. Ogden’s subject will be "Gem Education for the 21st Century." For additional information, contact Arianna Maccaferri at

Master Cutter McHardy Shows His Skills in Malaysia

Brian McHardy, a master diamond cutter from South Africa, was brought to Malaysia by Habib Jewels for its monthlong annual Diamond Fest, which ends on May 3, to show the art of diamond cutting. McHardy also unveiled the spectacular new diamond collection by Hearts on Fire that pays homage to eight of the world's most inspiring architectural feats. McHardy, who was born and raised in the town of Cullinan, home of the Premier Mine, joined Boston-based Hearts on Fire in 1999.

IDCA Gives Awards for '09

The Indian Diamond & Colorstone Association (IDCA) selected its honorees for 2009. Fred Meyer Jewelers was named retailer of the year; the Pioneer Award was granted to Navratan Kothari, chairman of the KGK Group; and Vasantbhai Sanghavi and Chandrakant Sanghavi, the chairman and director of Sanghavi Exports, respectively, together earned IDCA's Lifetime Achievement Award.

Turkish PM to Attend Opening of CIBJO Congress in Istanbul

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Prime Minister of Turkey, has confirmed that he will attend the opening ceremony of the 2009 CIBJO Congress in Istanbul on May 3. Also representing the Turkish government at the opening ceremony will be Kursad Tuzmen, the country's minister of foreign trade.

GIA's Weldon, Pardieu to Address ICA Congress in China

Robert Weldon and Vincent Pardieu, representatives of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), will address the International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA) Congress in China. Weldon, manager of GIA photography and visual resources, will discuss “New Developments at the Gemological Institute of America." He will also share reports from GIA's recent travels to exotic gemstone localities around the world. Pardieu, supervisor of field gemology at the GIA laboratory in Bangkok, will discuss a new deposit of emeralds that was recently discovered in Davdar, in the Xinjiang province of China. The ICA Congress will be held May 5 through 10, 2009, in Panyu in Guangzhou province.


Jacmel Jewelry Vault Manager Swipes $12M in Gold

The vault manager at Jacmel Jewelry has been charged with grand larceny and criminal possession of stolen property after she slowly stole about $12 million worth of gold by concealing small amounts in the lining of her pocketbook over the past 5 years. Teresa Tambunting, 50, worked at Jacmel for nearly 28 years and was made vault manager in 1991. After an investigation began, Tambunting wheeled a suitcase containing gold worth about $868,000 into the Jacmel office. She is out on bail.

BJP Fears Political Cost of Gujarat Diamond Workers' Woes

In 2002 and 2007, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) emerged triumphant in Gujarat with the support of diamond workers, who formed 10 percent of the electorate. But Narendra Modi's BJP government, after the economic crisis hit the industry, was slow to respond, finally coming up with a relief package two days before the new round of polls was announced. The Election Commission will not allow the plan to be implemented until the election process is done at the end of May. Angry diamond workers have threatened to vote against the BJP in as many as nine constituencies — Surat, Ahmedabad (East), Banaskantha, Bhavnagar, Amreli, Junagadh, Mehsana, Patan and Rajkot.

Is Surat's Improved Demand Just Pre-Election Hype?

Some diamantaires in Surat say there has been a slight improvement in the diamond industry, while others say these reports are politically motivated rumors, being spread to influence the fast-approaching poll. With official statistics showing a sharp decline in both exports and imports in March 2009, the issue has taken center stage in the election battle.

South Africa's ANC Faces New Test

The ruling African National Congress (ANC) won 65.9 percent of the vote in this past week's South African elections, on a platform that vowed to create more jobs and improve basic services. The ANC won 264 of the 400 seats in Parliament — just three seats shy of the two-thirds majority it needed to govern unopposed. Jacob Zuma, the ANC leader, is to be sworn in as president in May. The ANC has promised a massive infrastructure-spending bill, which it hopes will help fuel growth in the economy and lure private investment. It is also counting on a boost from gold, diamond and platinum operations, which haven't been hit as hard by falling prices.

Ex-FedEx Worker Pleads Guilty in Heist Plot

Edward Flores, a former FedEx worker, pleaded guilty last week for his involvement in the hijacking of a FedEx truck in Manhattan and the kidnapping of its driver. The mastermind of the heist was allegedly Brian Greenwald, co-owner of Doppelt & Greenwald, who is accused of also planning several other crimes, including a armed robbery of his own store by thieves dressed as FedEX workers. Flores gave the hijackers cellphones, company uniforms and information on truck routes and timing before the heists. The 34-year-old faces up to 20 years in prison.

JVC Memo Transaction Seminar - May 29 at JCK Vegas

The Jewelers Vigilance Committee (JVC) and The Jewelers Board of Trade (JBT) will present “The Basics of Memo Transaction — The Dos and Don’ts of Trading on Memo” at the JCK Las Vegas Show on Friday, May 29, 2009, from 12:30 p.m. to 1:45 p.m., in the San Polo Ballroom, Room 3401, on Level 3 of the Venetian Hotel. The seminar is free to all JCK Show badgeholders and no prior registration is required. Attendees will receive a copy of “The Essential Guide to ‘Memo’ Transactions." For questions, contact Amy Greenbaum at


Rio Tinto’s Blue Diamond Tender Exceeds Expectations

Rio Tinto’s recent tender of its "Once in a Blue Moon" collection, comprising 16 lots of blue and violet diamonds from its Argyle mine in Australia weighing 287 carats, garnered record prices, according to Rio spokespersons, who did not disclose the value of the sale. Diamonds for the tender were sourced from several years of production at Argyle, which, the company recently reported, doubled to 4.4 million carats in the first quarter of 2009 due to the processing of higher-grade ore at the mine during the period.

Stornoway Targets Proceeds of $2M in Private Placement

Stornoway Diamond announced a brokered private placement of almost 9.1 million flow-through common shares, for gross proceeds of up to $1.7 million (CAD 2 million). Stornoway reported that the flow-through shares will be priced at 22 cents each and are subject to a four-month holding period. The compensation options will be exercisable at 22 cents and will expire two years following closing. The proceeds from the placement will primarily be used for Stornoway's share of the exploration costs of the Renard Diamond Project in Quebec, Canada.

Namakwa Diamonds 1H Loss Grows to $77M

Namakwa Diamonds reported a loss of $76.7 million during the first half of its fiscal year 2009, up from a loss of $19.4 million one year ago. The junior miner laid off 562 employees. Low diamond prices caused Namakwa to process diamond inventory impairments to the value of $32.1 million. At the end of the half, the company had $21.4 million cash at hand, diamond inventory of $21.9 million and receivables of $8 million, for total assets of $52.2 million.

Mano River FY Income -33%

Mano River Resources' net income fell 33 percent to $1.8 million during the fiscal year that ended December 31, 2008. During the year, the company's diamond project in Kono, Sierra Leone, sold 811 carats of diamonds from the Pol-K kimberlite for an average of $152 per carat, and a parcel of 253 carats from the Bardu kimberlite realized an average value of $54 per carat — but the company claimed that these grades were not representative. Mano River subsidiary Stellar's new Mandala project in Guinea has so far this month yielded 1,649 carats of diamonds, for an average grade of 0.8 carats per cubic meter. Mandala is projected to produce an average of 10,000 carats of diamonds per month from May to December 2009.

Orion South's Bulk Sample Program Recovers 520cts.

The final set of diamond results from underground bulk sampling of the Orion South kimberlite, in Fort &agrave; la Corne in Canada, recovered 519.63 carats. In the final sample, a total of 2,573 commercial-sized diamonds collectively weighing 519.59 carats was recovered from fourteen batches. Sixty-four diamonds greater than 1 carat were recovered, and 11 exceeded 2 carats; the four largest stones were 32.96, 7.23, 5.97 and 3.17 carats. With the processing of samples from Orion South now completed, a total of 2,346.27 carats have been recovered, for an overall average grade of 18 carats per hudred metric tons.

BRC DiamondCore Might Delist from TSX

BRC Diamondcore may delist from the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX). The junior miner reported Thursday that it has until May 28, 2009, to comply with the exchange’s listing requirements. BRC DiamondCore posted a net loss of $86.2 million in fiscal 2008. The company suspended bulk sampling operations at all of its South Africa operations in the fourth quarter.

Peregrine Diamonds Funds '09 Nanuq Exploration

Peregrine Diamonds approved a $1.5 million exploration budget for its Nanuq property in Nunavut, Canada, which will set the stage for a drilling program in 2010. Peregrine discovered three diamondiferous kimberlites, Naturalik, Kayuu and Tudlik, at Nanuq in 2007, and many anomalies remain to be investigated. The program will begin in July, with results expected later in the year and in early 2010. Peregrine and its predecessor company have spent approximately $7.5 million on exploration at Nanuq so far.

Pangea DiamondFields Strengthens Project Portfolio in '08

Pangea DiamondFields reported excellent progress during its last fiscal year: It increased its holdings in the Cassanguidi project in Angola to 58.5 percent; it held its first sale from the Bakerville project in South Africa, yielding $1,448 per carat; and it recovered 2,600 carats from bulk sampling at the Longatshimo River project in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The company reported that diamond revenue fell 42 percent to $2.8 million. Pangea sustained a loss of $17.2 million, a 9 percent improvement from one year ago.

Motapa's Mothae Results Include Several Stones +20cts.

Motapa Diamonds and its joint venture partner Lucara Diamond completed diamond recovery work on their 100,000 metric ton (110,231 ton) bulk sample program at Mothae in Lesotho. One 15,390 metric ton (16,965 ton) sample yielded 1,519 stones totaling 715.79 carats, for a sample grade of 4.65 carats per hundred dry metric tons. Total diamonds recovered from tailings and the bulk sampling combined included 217 stones greater than 2 carats, 63 stones greater than 5 carats, 13 stones greater that 10 carats and 5 stones greater than 20 carats. The five largest diamonds weighed 24.60, 23.39, 22.71, 22.62 and 20.04 carats.

Report Questions Botswana's Funding of De Beers

Botswana's government should use the current downturn as an opportunity to take a second look at its agreement with De Beers, suggests a report by Bifm. In the report, an economic review of the first quarter of 2009, Keith Jefferis, the chairman of the Bifm Investment Committee, questions the government's logic of pumping money into De Beers at a time when Debswana is closing some mines and laying off workers. The report suggests that if the government is being asked to put more money on the table in its partnership with De Beers, it should first ask itself if the returns are worth the extra investments. The report also questions the marketing agreement that dictates that all diamonds produced by Debswana should be sold through the Diamond Trading Company (DTC), since the DTC has put these plans on hold.

Mining Symposium to Focus on Impact of Recession

The Capital Resources Conference, scheduled for Botswana in June of this year, will focus on how the global economic crisis has affected international mining companies operating in the country. The conference has high-caliber sponsors and presenters, among them the government of Botswana, the Canadian Trade Commission, Paydirt Media and Mining Weekly. Most companies involved in uranium, coal, copper, nickel and diamond mining in Botswana are scheduled to present. There will be pre- and post-conference roadshows to some of the resource projects highlighted at the conference, and attendees will have the opportunity to have one-on-one meetings with potential investors and fund managers.

ALROSA Plans Production Expansion at New Diamond Fields

Russia's ALROSA is planning to launch production at new diamond fields, Sergei Vybornov, the company president, told reporters. In an interview with Interfax, it also emerged that ALROSA is considering withdrawing from the Luo-Kamachia-Kamajiku diamond project in Angola, since the venture is barely profitable and work there has virtually shut down. ALROSA owns a 45 percent stake in the project; Portugal's Eskom owns the rest. Catoca mining company, ALROSA's second joint venture in Angola, will continue to operate. Vybornov also said that ALROSA will suspend plans to build two hydroelectric plants in Africa. The ALROSA Investment Group may sell its interest in an iron ore project in Yakutia, valued at $300 million to $400 million, to investors from China. Two unnamed companies are currently interested.

Pala Investments Calls a Rockwell Shareholder Meeting

Pala Investments Holdings, which holds almost 20 percent of the common shares of Rockwell Diamonds, has called for a special and general shareholders' meeting of Rockwell to be held on May 14, 2009. Pala called the meeting in order to pass a special resolution to remove the directors of the company, to elect new directors and to amend and then terminate the company's shareholder rights plan agreement. Pala is exercising its right to call the meeting after Rockwell's directors failed to call one that Pala had requisitioned.

Sunrise Diamonds Concludes Kaavi-Kuopio Acquisition

Sunrise Diamonds concluded its agreement with Nordic Diamonds to acquire Nordic's 14 Kaavi-Kuopio claims in Finland, for which it issued 100,000 of its shares to Nordic. Sunrise also granted to Nordic a 1 percent gross overriding royalty on production of diamonds from the claims. Application will be made for the new shares to be admitted to trading on London's Alternative Investment Market (AIM), and trading is expected to commence on April 30, 2009.


For the week ending April 30, 2009

Apr. 30 Apr. 23 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.755 0.768 -0.013
$1 = Rupee 49.7 50.1 -0.3
$1 = Israel Shekel 4.19 4.26 -0.07
$1 = Rand 8.46 8.96 -0.50
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.20 1.24 -0.04

Precious Metals
Gold $886.20 $903.30 -$17.10
Platinum $1,103.00 $1,182.00 -$79.00

Stock Indexes Chng.
BSE 11,403.25 11,134.99 268.26 2.41%
Dow Jones Avg. 8,168.12 7,957.06 211.06 2.65%
FTSE 4,243.71 4,018.23 225.48 5.61%
Hang Seng 15,520.99 15,214.46 306.53 2.01%
S & P 500 872.81 851.92 20.89 2.45%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 771.14 720.21 50.93 7.07%

Birks & Mayors $0.37 $0.44 -$0.07 -15.91%
Blue Nile $42.74 $38.65 $4.09 10.58%
Charles & Colvard $0.42 $0.41 $0.01 2.44%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $1.00 $1.10 -$0.10 -9.09%
Fuqi International $6.31 $4.96 $1.35 27.22%
JCPenney $30.72 $26.68 $4.04 15.14%
Kohl's $45.35 $44.30 $1.05 2.37%
Lazare Kaplan $1.45 $1.21 $0.24 19.83%
LJ International $1.09 $1.13 -$0.04 -3.54%
Macy's $13.71 $12.62 $1.09 8.64%
Man Sang $2.21 $2.15 $0.06 2.79%
Movado Group $9.25 $8.59 $0.66 7.68%
Nordstrom $22.67 $21.14 $1.53 7.24%
Saks $5.17 $4.30 $0.87 20.23%
Signet $15.85 $16.24 -$0.39 -2.40%
Sotheby's $11.69 $9.95 $1.74 17.49%
Tiffany $28.95 $26.80 $2.15 8.02%
Wal-Mart $50.41 $48.86 $1.55 3.17%
Zale $3.73 $4.41 -$0.68 -15.42%

Bulgari €3.90 €3.93 -€0.03 -0.76%
Bijou Brigitte €81.46 €79.66 €1.80 2.26%
Esa €2.74 €3.10 -€0.36 -11.61%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,300.00 CHF 1,180.00 CHF 120.00 10.17%
LVMH €57.39 €54.35 €3.04 5.59%
Pinault P-R SA €58.45 €57.74 €0.71 1.23%
Richemont SA CHF 20.60 CHF 20.70 -CHF 0.10 -0.48%
Swatch Group CHF 160.30 CHF 161.60 -CHF 1.30 -0.80%
Theo Fennell (pence) 16.70 16.70 €0.00 0.00%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 13.04 11.87 1.17 9.86%
Gitanjali Gems 66.55 67.00 -0.45 -0.67%
Rajesh Exports 26.70 28.35 -1.65 -5.82%
Ren. Jewellery 26.65 27.00 -0.35 -1.30%
Su-Raj Diamonds 26.45 26.50 -0.05 -0.19%
Titan 748.40 763.15 -14.75 -1.93%
Zodiac JRD 12.60 12.50 0.10 0.80%
Suashish Diamonds 182.00 140.65 41.35 29.40%

Michael Hill NZD 0.55 NZD 0.54 NZD 0.01 1.85%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $10.78 $9.87 $0.91 9.22%
Archangel CAD 0.05 CAD 0.08 -CAD 0.03 -37.50%
Harry Winston CAD 5.00 CAD 5.15 -CAD 0.15 -2.91%
Mountain Province CAD 1.28 CAD 1.29 -CAD 0.01 -0.78%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.59 CAD 0.63 -CAD 0.04 -6.35%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.06 CAD 0.05 CAD 0.01 20.00%
Shore Gold CAD 0.43 CAD 0.42 CAD 0.01 2.38%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.17 CAD 0.18 -CAD 0.02 -8.33%
True North Gems CAD 0.09 CAD 0.10 -CAD 0.01 -5.26%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 22.7 22.5 0.2 0.84%
BHP Billiton 1,424.0 1,385.0 39.0 2.82%
Firestone Diamonds 27.5 24.0 3.5 14.42%
Gem Diamonds 125.5 130.0 -4.5 -3.46%
Gemfields 4.3 4.3 -0.1 -1.39%
Mano River 4.0 4.3 -0.3 -6.35%
Mwana Africa 5.9 4.6 1.3 27.27%
Namakwa Diamonds 26.0 29.5 -3.5 -11.86%
Petra Diamonds 47.5 40.0 7.5 18.75%
Rio Tinto plc 2,774.5 2,571.0 203.5 7.
Múdry sa teší objaveniu pravdy, hlupák falošnosti.
Registrovaný uživatel
Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, May 08, 2009
News: Rounds in 0.90-2.00 ct., H-I, VVS-VS improving with healthy demand for oversizes. Indian demand rising but cash buyers are price resistant and requesting very deep discounts. U.S. retail demand continues to slow with lower price points expected for Mother's Day. China’s gold and jewelry sales +20% over May Day holiday weekend on May 1. Blue Nile 1Q sales -11% to $62.4 mil., net profits -25% to $1.9 mil. 1Q sales -50% to $31.2 mil., profits -67% to $1.5 mil. Finlay 4Q sales -22% to $263 mil., net loss of $63 mil. vs. net profit of $13 mil. Signet 1Q sales -7% to $763 mil., same store sales -3%. Suashish Diamonds 4Q sales -70% to $15 mil., net loss of $4 mil., vs. profit of $1 mil. Diavik mine production expected to drop 41% to 5.4 million carats in '09. Japan’s March polished imports -21% to $59 mil.



Monday, June 1, 2009
Venetian Hotel - San Polo Ballroom (Level 3)

"State of the Diamond Industry" by Martin Rapaport,
8:00-10:00 a.m.

Bankers Conference,
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Fair Trade Jewelry Conference,
1:00 - 4:30 p.m.


Limited Seating. Reserve your space now!

For Additional Rapaport JCK information visit


Rapaport International Diamond Conference
New York City - September 10, 2009

Save the Date
Reserve your space early. Email



Energetic motivated assistant manager
with diamond industry experience and excellent references.
University-educated with fluent English, Gujrati and computer skills.
Resume to:



"These are 'challenging times,' not 'bad economic times' — they just inspire us to get creative. We started during one of these times, and again in the 1980s; at Christmastime we just turn off the news and remain positive. Our onsite casting and repair shop has been a tremendous asset, and we can keep the cost of our product very competitive. During these challenging times, people tend to eliminate marketing from their budgets to try and save money, but you really need to market more. If people see that you are positive and confident, they will feel more confident to come in and make that special purchase. It is just fun to be in here, and we enjoy every one of our customers."

Jim & Sherry Hofstetter
J.R. Hofstetter, Jefferson Village, Ohio


U.S. Consumer Sentiment Rises on Obama's Policies

Pumped up by faith in President Barack Obama's policies, U.S. consumer sentiment rose to 65.1 in April from 57.3 in March, according to a survey by the University of Michigan and Reuters. In mid-April, the estimate was 61.9. The April result is the highest since September 2008. Sixty-five percent of consumers thought that Obama's policies would improve the national economy, and 43 percent thought that they would improve their financial situation. However, most continue to be concerned about their personal finances and are cutting spending.

May Day Gives Chinese Retail, Jewelry a Boost

China’s retail sales grew 9 percent during the three-day May Day holiday. Based on figures from 1,000 major domestic retailers that it monitors, China's Ministry of Commerce estimated that retail sales reached $1.8 billion (CNY 12 billion). The ministry reported that sales of gold and other jewelry rose 20 percent.

Boycott of Pakistani 'Blood Emeralds' Urged

A campaign to boycott emeralds from the Pakistani district of Swat has begun, because the money could be used to buy explosives for the Taliban. The Taliban have seized two of the emerald mines in Swat, declared them a trust and are mining them around the clock. The profits are split between the Taliban and the miners, potentially netting the Taliban about $3 million a year.

Rapaport Weekly Broadcast
Very poor consumer spending habits continue to pressure the industry, as publicly listed companies report steep declines in sales and demand.


Japan’s Polished Diamond Imports -21% in March

Japan’s polished diamond imports fell 21 percent to $59.3 million in March 2009. Imports by volume rose 26 percent to 217,956 carats, as the value per carat dropped 37 percent to $272. During the first quarter of the year, Japan’s total diamond imports fell 19 percent to $174.3 million, but they were up 7 percent in terms of volume, to 508,577 carats.


U.S. April Retail Sales Slide, High End Hit Hardest

April retail sales results are as follows: Neiman Marcus' April sales fell 21 percent to $271 million and same-store sales dropped 23 percent. Third fiscal quarter revenue declined 24 percent, and comparable revenues decreased 25 percent. Nordstrom April sales were down 7 percent to $561 million and same-store sales decreased 11 percent. First-quarter sales fell 9 percent to $1.7 billion, and same-store sales declined 13 percent. Saks' April sales plunged 31 to $238.7 million and same-store sales dropped 32 percent. First-quarter sales fell 27 percent to $615.1 million and same-store sales were down 28 percent. Macy's April sales declined 10 percent to $1.7 billion and same-store sales dropped 9 percent. First quarter sales decreased 10 percent to $5.2 billion and same-store sales fell 9 percent. J.C. Penney April sales declined 5 percent to $1.3 billion and comprarable store sales were down 7 percent. Kohl's April sales slipped 2 percent to $1.2 billion and same-store sales decreased 6 percent. Dillard's April sales dropped 10 percent to $429.3 million and same-store sales fell 6 percent. First-quarter sales were down 16 percent to $1.4 billion and same-store sales declined 13 percent. Costco's April sales decreased 6 percent to $5.2 billion. Comparable store sales dropped 8 percent. BJ's April sales decreased 3 percent during April to $719 million and comparable club sales declined by 5 percent. First quarter sales were flat at $2.3 billion and same-store sales fell 2 percent.

U.S. Weekly Retail Sales -1%

U.S. chain store sales fell 0.8 percent for the week ending May 2, 2009, according to the latest results from the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs. Week-to-week comparisons, however, provided a slightly better outlook, as sales rose 0.7 percent from the previous week. ICSC Research anticipates that aggregate reported sales for the month of April will increase at least by 1 percent from a year ago.

Hong Kong Retail Sales -8% in March

Hong Kong’s retail sales fell 8 percent in March to an estimated $2.7 billion (HKD 20.8 billion). Discounting deflation, sales decreased by 9 percent during the month. Declines in sales of jewelry, watches, clocks and valuable gifts fell 10 percent by volume during the month.

Blue Nile 1Q Sales -11%, Profits -25%

Blue Nile's first-quarter sales fell 11 percent to $62.4 million. Cost of sales dropped 13 percent to $49.2 million. Gross profit as a percent of sales rose 140 basis points to 21.2 percent. The improvement reflected Blue Nile's ability to benefit from declining diamond prices. The company's net profits decreased 25 percent to $1.9 million. International sales were down 3 percent to $5.6 million, but excluding the impact of a stronger dollar, Blue Nile reported, international sales rose 19 percent. This means that sales in the U.S. market were $56.8 million, a decline of more than 12 percent from a year ago.

Su-Raj 4Q Sales -4%, Profits -70%

Su-Raj Diamonds net sales fell 4 percent to $145.3 million (INR 7.2 billion) during its fourth fiscal quarter that ended March 31, 2009. Diamond revenues declined 6 percent to $38.2 million (INR 1.9 billion), while jewelry revenues dropped 3 percent to $107.1 million (INR 5.3 billion). Su-Raj's net profits plunged 70 percent to $1.3 million (INR 63.5 million) for the quarter. Su-Raj’s consolidated financial results for the full fiscal year saw net sales rise 16 percent to $533.5 million (INR 26.4 billion), and profits falling 42 percent to $8 million (INR 394.3 million).

Titan Industries FY09 Profits +11%, Jewelry Sales +36%

Titan Industries, which owns the Tanishq brand, reported that its net profits were up 11 percent to $32.9 million (INR 1.6 billion) for the year that ended March 31, 2009, as net sales rose 28 percent to $770.9 million (INR 38.3 billion). Jewelry sales grew 36 percent to $555.8 million (INR 27.6 billion), and profits from the jewelry segment increased 51 percent to $33.1 million (INR 1.6 billion). The company plans to close its two Tanishq boutiques in the U.S.

Finlay FY Sales +5% to $754M, Reports Loss of $107M

Finlay Enterprises' sales rose 5 percent to $754.3 million for its fiscal year that ended January 31, 2009. The company had sales of $444.6 million at department store-based jewelry counters, a drop of 10 percent from one year ago, and $310 million at specialty jewelry stores, up 39 percent. Finlay reported a net loss of $107.3 million, widened from a loss of $10 million one year ago. The group is exiting the department store business model, and plans to close approximately half of its specialty jewelry stores in 2009.

Charles & Colvard's 1Q Sales -27%, Reports Loss of $1M

Charles & Colvard's sales in the first quarter dropped 27 percent to $2.5 million, and the company repored a net loss of more than $1 million, up from a loss of $698,085 one year ago. Charles & Colvard's U.S sales for the quarter fell 29 percent to $1.7 million, and international sales fell 21 percent to $800,000. The average selling price per carat decreased 13 percent from one year ago, due to a special pricing promotion. The company's immediate priorities include an attempt to find more sales opportunities. 1Q Revenue -50%, Profits -67% reported net revenue of $31.2 million for its first quarter, down 50 percent from one year ago. U.S. sales represented almost 70 percent of the total. Net income fell 67 percent to $1.5 million for the quarter, which ended March 31, 2009. The auction website revealed that the number of new buyers dropped 39 percent to 51,021, the average selling price per order dropped by $1 to $181, and the average number of items sold per day dropped 50 percent to 6,110. anticipates that net revenue for its second and third quarters will be lower than in first quarter.

Flawless Diamond 4Q Sales +10%, Profits -94%

Flawless Diamond's net sales rose 10 percent to $35.5 million (INR 1.8 billion) in the fourth quarter that ended March 31, 2009. Net profits for the period dropped 94 percent to $107,209 (INR 5.3 million), due in part to a 16 percent rise in expenses to $34.8 million (INR 1.7 billion). Flawless Diamond ended the fiscal year with sales up 9 percent to $123.8 million (INR 6.1 billion), while net profits declined 45 percent to $2.7 million (INR 133.5 million).

Suashish Diamonds 4Q Sales -70%, Posts Net Loss

Suashish Diamonds reported net sales fell 70 percent to $15.1 million (INR 748.5 million) in the fourth fiscal quarter that ended March 31, 2009. The company posted a net loss of $4.1 million (INR 200.6 million) for the quarter. For the full fiscal year, sales declined 25 percent to $149.7 million (INR 7.41 billion), and Suashish reported a net loss of $12.3 million (INR 607.8 million).

Signet 1Q Sales -7%

Signet reported that group same-store sales fell 3 percent, and total sales dropped 7 percent to $762.6 million, during its first quarter that ended May 2, 2009. The weak British pound impacted the sales figures for the U.K., which showed a decline of 28 percent in dollar terms, to $137.8 million. At constant exchange rates, however, U.K. sales decreased only 2 percent. Same-store sales in the U.K. were down 4 percent. Sales in the U.S. fell 1 percent and same-store sales dropped 3 percent.

Sotheby's 1Q Rev. -58%, Reduces Headcount 20%

Sotheby's first-quarter revenue fell 58 percent to $54.4 million. The decrease was primarily due to a 71 percent decline in net auction sales. The auction house's net loss for the first quarter increased by 178 percent to $34.5 million, or 53 cents per share. Sotheby's plans to reduce its headcount by 20 percent, for an annual cost savings of approximately $24 million.

London Jewelry Sale at Bonhams Approaches $2M

Bonhams' London sale of fine jewelry on April 29, 2009, came in at almost $1.9 million. The sale featured 136 lots, of which 68 percent were sold. Seventy percent of the buyers were privates. A pear-shaped, fancy light pink diamond, weighing 1.47 carats, sold for $30,000, and a round brilliant-cut diamond weighing 5 carats, D, VS1, sold for $194,000, against a presale estimate of $117,600 to $147,000.

International Diamond & Gold of Ohio Forced into Liquidation

International Diamond & Gold plans to liquidate and close its four stores in central Ohio and four more in Washington state. The Columbus-based jeweler was put into receivership by Huntington National Bank after defaulting on a $12.25 million loan with $11.5 million still outstanding. Michael Barren of Barren & Merry will oversee the liquidation, which is set to conclude no later than August 30, 2009. The liquidation is expected to fetch $13 million on inventory valued at $50.4 million.

M.J. Christensen to Rebrand One of its Locations After Closing Sale

Retailer M.J. Christensen plans to reopen its Henderson, Nevada, Galleria Mall location under the new name LaReverie after the consolidation sale that is underway there is finished. The new store will focus on "price points primarily between $300 and $2,500," with "strong self-purchase appeal for the fashion-conscious woman." M.J. Christensen plans to continue operating under its namesake at its three freestanding locations at Boca Park and Montecito Marketplace in las Vegas and at Eastern and Coronado streets in Henderson.

Still No Sign of Australian $1M Diamond Ring

In a smash-and-grab robbery, a 9.1-carat solitaire diamond engagement ring was stolen from Hardy Brothers jewelers in Melbourne, Australia, in broad daylight on March 29, 2009, but the piece has not yet turned up. Investigators suspect the thief has tried to sell the diamond.

Bonhams' June Sale Features Tourmaline

Bonhams in New York will hold an auction on June 1, 2009, featuring 525 lots of mineral specimens, gold nuggets, lapidary works of art, gemstones and jewelry. Tourmaline is featured in more than 50 of the lots; many shades of the gemstone will be on offer in both polished and unpolished form, as unmounted stones and in jewelry. Leading the tourmaline offerings is a multicolor jewelry suite comprising 59 tiny, intricately hand-carved flowers by German lapidary master Manfred Wild, with a presale estimate of between $28,000 and $35,000.

Recessionistas Scoop Up Big and Blue Diamonds

Australian jewelry makers say that diamonds are becoming an investor's new best friend in the wake of the property slump and the stock market slide. In recent months the value of smaller mainstream white diamonds has fallen sharply, but some jewelers here say the market for larger stones is growing. So-called "recessionistas" apparently see these diamond as a good investment. The fancy colored diamond market is also surprisingly strong, as evidenced by the success of a global auction of a rare collection of blue diamonds from the Argyle mine.

Goenka Diamonds & Jewels Launches Ceres Collection

Goenka Diamonds & Jewels has launched "Ceres," a high-end diamond jewelry brand, sold at an exclusive Ceres store in Mumbai. Three more Ceres retail outlets will open this year in Bangalore, Delhi and Kolkata, and plans are underway for international stores. Prices start from $20,000 and run into the hundreds of thousands. Goenka, which also owns the lower-priced G-Wild line, plans to invest close to $30.4 million on its retail plans this year.

Tiffany Buys Lambertson Truex

Luxury jewelry retailer Tiffany & Co. has bought Lambertson Truex, the 10-year-old upscale handbag and other accessories brand, which filed for Chapter 11 in March. Majority owner Samsonite put the brand up for sale in December.

Ultra-Wealthy Rank Graff as Best

High net-worth consumers in the U.S. rated Graff the best among luxury jewelry brands, according to the Luxury Institute. Consumers who recommend Graff describe the brand as "large and understated but beautiful diamond jewelry" and having "ultimate quality and design." Harry Winston and Buccellati were ranked second and third, respectively.


Julie Haack Receives WIN Business Award

The Women’s Initiative Network (WIN) awarded Julie Haack, president of Donald Haack Diamonds & Fine Gems, with the Elaine Creasser National Christian Business Woman’s Award.

Zalemark Appoints Ta as Company VP

Zalemark appointed Jenny Ta, principal of investment banking and consulting firm JC Concorde Securities, as a vice president. Ta will be handling a comprehensive shareholder and external communications program for the jewelry brand. Zalemark also signed a licensing agreement with artist Deb Eiseman for a watch and jewelry line centered around Eiseman's healing-inspired artwork.

LVMH Appoints Dufour to Head Zenith

LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton appointed Jean-Frederic Dufour to be president and chief executive of Zenith Manufacture, effective June 1, 2009. Dufour previously worked at Cie Geneva, Swatch Group and Ulysse Nardin, and has been head of product development for Chopard Watches and Jewellery since 2001.

Jewelers Mutual Appoints Copeman as President

Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company appointed Darwin Copeman as the company’s new president and chief executive officer (CEO). Copeman has more than 30 years of insurance experience. He will join Jewelers Mutual on May 18, 2009.

Former Friedman’s CEO Gets 12 Years for Fraud

Bradley Stinn, the former chief executive officer (CEO) of Friedman’s and Crescent Jewelers, was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for securities fraud, mail fraud and conspiracy. A jury found Stinn guilty of leading a multiyear securities fraud scheme that resulted in Friedman’s shareholders and other victims losing more than $20 million.

Israel's Avidar Calls For Aggressive Marketing Programs

Eli Avidar, managing director of the Israel Diamond Institute Group of Companies (IDI), called upon the global jewelry and diamond industries to “think out of the box” about marketing their products during the current economic crisis. He added that now, as other enterprises are pulling out, is the best time to introduce aggressive, strategic advertising and marketing programs in all media. Avidar cited the Israel Diamond Institute's “Together Works” campaign as an example of the type of marketing initiatives he is calling for.

Judge Denies Plea Request in Donnelly Murder Case

Christopher DiMeo's motion to plead guilty in killing Fairfield jewelers Tim and Kim Donnelly four years ago, on the condition that he get a life term instead of the death penatly, was denied by Connecticut Superior Court judge. DiMeo pleaded guilty in the June 2005 killing of Long Island, New York, jewelry store owner Thomas Renison and was sentenced to life in prison in that case. Kimberly Pearce, DiMeo's girlfriend, pleaded guilty in November to helping plan the murder of the Donnellys. She is facing up to 50 years in prison.

Buffett Says Consumers Have Changed Habits

Warren Buffett said during the company's shareholders' meeting on Saturday that Berkshire Hathaway will report a roughly 10 percent drop in its first-quarter operating profit, to about $1.7 billion. Jewelry stores, Shaw carpet, Acme Brick and Clayton Homes performed poorly he said. Buffett remains optimistic about the long-term prospects of the U.S. economy, but said that it is difficult to predict when the recession will end. Many consumers who still have the same jobs, same savings and same homes responded to the financial turmoil by changing their spending and buying habits dramatically, and this shift in consumerism may spell a slow recovery.


2009 CIBJO Congress Wraps Up

During the three-day CIBJO Congress, which ran from Sunday, May 3, through Tuesday, May 5 in Istanbul, Turkey, the CIBJO General Assembly unanimously passed sweeping changes to its statutes, extending voting rights to members representing commercial entities while preserving the role of national associations. Committee highlights included the Diamond Commission, which discussed at length the issue of a nomenclature for gem-quality synthetic diamonds, and the Pearl Commission, which passed a motion to disclose pearls as "color-induced cultured pearls" if a new treatment was applied to them during the growth process. The congress also decided to create a new standing committee for chief executives of industry organizations. Dr. Gaetano Cavalieri was reelected CIBJO president.

Dealers Club Disputants File Warring Briefs

Diamond dealer David Abraham called upon the Supreme Court of New York to void the vote that was taken on December 4, 2008, by the members of the New York Diamond Dealers Club to change the club's bylaws, and to void the subsequent general election of February 26, 2009, in turn. In the most recent development in the case, both sides filed briefs in which they laid out their two different versions of how the club's bylaws and New York statutory law define the consequences of nonpayment of dues and the resulting automatic suspension of membership — a definition that would determine the eligibility of those voters who paid their dues, or were given dues waivers, on the day of the vote itself.

Wrekin's $16M Ruby Loses Promise

After U.K. company Wrekin Construction collapsed, investigators discovered that a wildly overvalued ruby had a role in the company's downfall. In 2007, Wrekin issued $16 million (GBP 11 million) of preference shares to Derbyshire construction firm Tamar Group in exchange for a mysterious ruby named the "Gem of Tanzania." The ruby had been valued at just $447,000 a year before, however, and it turned out that the two separate valuations that placed it in the tens of millions were forgeries. The record for the most valuable ruby ever sold is $4.5 million.

Grand Jury Indicts Six Men in Salesman Robbery Case

A federal grand jury in Columbus, Ohio, indicted six men on April 28, on one count each of conspiracy and interfering with interstate commerce for an April 3 robbery of $1 million worth of jewelry. The jeweler was likely followed to a restaurant parking lot in Westerville, Ohio, where the robbers smashed his windows and took jewelry cases. Oscar Ferero, 26; Fernando Patino Cruz, 25; Kevin Ismael Miranda, 29; and Bernardo Sanchez-Perez, 35, of Los Angeles, as well as Donald Jose Bonilla-Canales, 34, and Yhariel Allesandro Roverando-Mondragon, 38, are all in New Jersey awaiting transfer to Ohio.

Rosy Blue Publishes its First CSR Report

The Rosy Blue Group's first corporate social responsibility (CSR) report is now available online at The report summarizes the group’s CSR activities in 2008, and highlights how Rosy Blue has managed its social, environmental and community impacts, as well as its committed strategy moving forward.

Rio Tinto Launches Champagne Diamond Competition

Rio Tinto Diamonds launched the Champagne Diamond Design Competition, which aims to attract talented new jewelry designers to showcase the range of champagne diamonds in innovative designs. The competition comprises four categories, with the overall winner receiving the title of "Champagne Visionary." The four winning designs will form part of a nationwide travelling exhibition hosted at leading jewelry retail locations.

Platinum Guild Announces Platform for 2009 JCK, Couture Shows

Platinum Guild International USA will be bringing the “Platinum Pavilion" — which will serve as both a location for platinum designers' booths and an educational center — to both the JCK and Couture shows this year. At Couture, PGI will host the second annual “Platinum Couture Style Challenge,” which recognizes and promotes creatively-designed, unique platinum pieces.

JA Pushes Back Date of 2010 Winter Show

JA New York and the National Jeweler Network have scheduled the JA NY Winter Show 2010 for February 28 through March 2, 2010, which is later than the usual January time slot, in order for retailers to assess post-Christmas and Valentine's Day inventory before the show. JA reported that the response to the new dates has been enthusiastic.

GIA India to Launch Classes in Hyderabad

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) India plans to offer a pearl-grading lab class and a retail jewelry management (RJM) business course at the Golconda Institute of Diamonds in Hyderabad.

Gübelin Gem Lab to Hold Off-Premises Testing in NY

The Gübelin Gem Lab will hold off-premises testing services in New York City from May 20 through 27, 2009, at 589 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1205, between the hours of 9 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.


Diavik Diamond Production to Drop 41% in 2009

Production at the Diavik Diamond Mine in Canada is expected to fall 41 percent to 5.4 million caratsin 2009, as owners Harry Winston and Rio Tinto scale down output to meet the slump in demand. Harry Winston, which has a 31 percent “economic” share in the mine, has budgeted $130 million for capital expenditure at the mine in the next three years, allocating $47 million to the fiscal year ending January 31, 2010. Open pit mining at Diavik is expected to conclude in 2012, and underground mining is expected to reach its ongoing capacity of 1.5 million metric tons (1.7 tons) a year in 2013.

Shore Gold Recovers $4M from ABCP Investment

Shore Gold received $4.4 million as a partial return of principal from its $19 million asset-backed commercial paper (ABCP) investment that was essentially frozen since August 2007. The Pan-Canadian Investors Committee worked out a restructuring plan with all affected stakeholders, and it was approved by the court in January. Shore Gold has $20.2 million in cash and short-term investments, more than enough for the exploration work and desktop studies necessary to reach a production decision in 2010.

Lucara Diamond Signs Agreement to Acquire Motapa

Lucara Diamond signed an agreement to acquire all outstanding shares of Motapa Diamonds. Each Motapa share will be exchanged for 0.9055 shares of Lucara. The convertible securities of Motapa will be acquired at the same exchange ratio. Motapa will hold a shareholder meeting to vote on the transaction on June 26, 2009. If the acquisition passes, the combined company will include the major Mothae diamond development project in Lesotho.

Archangel Calls Off De Beers Refinancing

Archangel Diamond Corporation has called off a fundraising plan which would have given De Beers a 72 percent stake in the company. De Beers, which owns 58 percent of Archangel shares, was scheduled to raise its stake in a $2.6 million (CAD 3 million) private placement and $6.7 million (CAD 7.9 million) debt restructuring announced on March 20. The funds were to be used to restructure existing debt and enable Archangel to meet its normal running costs. Archangel is now seeking alternative financing.

Stornoway Encouraged by Diamond Processing at Aviat

Stornoway Diamond recovered 213.2 carats of diamonds from processing 148.3 metric tons (163.5 tons) from the ES1 kimberlite at its Aviat Project in Nunavut, Canada. The three largest diamonds recovered weighed 3.99 carats, 1.72 carats and 1.22 carats. A total of 302.7 carats of diamonds have now been recovered from 190.9 metric tons (210.4 tons) from ES1, for an overall diamond recovery rate of 159 carats per hundred metric tons. The next stage of the project will be to conduct a market valuation on the full parcel of diamonds, which will proceed once the market stabilizes.

Pala Proposes List of Names to Run Rockwell's Board

Pala Investments Holdings released a list of people whom it contends are strong candidates to run Rockwell Diamonds. Pala, which owns a 20 percent stake in the junor miner, has called a special shareholders' meeting for June 17, 2009, to vote on whether to remove Rockwell's current directors and elect new ones. Pala also expects the shareholders to vote on terminating the company's shareholder rights plan agreement.

Harvard Study Criticizes Child Labor in Diamond Mines

Harvard University's human rights program says children are being exploited as a source of cheap labor for diamond mines in Sierra Leone. The civil war that raised awareness of "blood diamonds" and led to the creation of the Kimberly Process has ended, but the lives of children working in the mines have not improved. Many children came to the mines after their parents were killed or wounded during the war, and these children are being exploited, the Harvard researchers say, working long hours in dangerous conditions for very little pay.

For the week ending May 7, 2009

May. 7 Apr. 30 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.746 0.755 -0.009
$1 = Rupee 49.1 49.7 -0.6
$1 = Israel Shekel 4.12 4.19 -0.07
$1 = Rand 8.41 8.46 -0.05
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.16 1.20 -0.04

Precious Metals
Gold $910.50 $886.20 $24.30
Platinum $1,145.00 $1,103.00 $42.00

Stock Indexes Chng.
BSE 12,116.94 11,403.25 713.69 6.26%
Dow Jones Avg. 8,409.70 8,168.12 241.58 2.96%
FTSE 4,398.68 4,243.71 154.97 3.65%
Hang Seng 17,217.89 15,520.99 1,696.90 10.93%
S & P 500 907.36 872.81 34.55 3.96%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 764.25 771.14 -6.89 -0.89%

Birks & Mayors $0.46 $0.37 $0.09 24.32%
Blue Nile $44.61 $42.74 $1.87 4.38%
Charles & Colvard $0.44 $0.42 $0.02 4.76%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $1.00 $1.00 $0.00 0.00%
Fuqi International $7.34 $6.31 $1.03 16.32%
JCPenney $30.04 $30.72 -$0.68 -2.21%
Kohl's $44.29 $45.35 -$1.06 -2.34%
Lazare Kaplan $1.60 $1.45 $0.15 10.34%
LJ International $1.36 $1.09 $0.27 24.77%
Macy's $12.81 $13.71 -$0.90 -6.56%
Man Sang $2.21 $2.21 $0.00 0.00%
Movado Group $8.76 $9.25 -$0.49 -5.30%
Nordstrom $23.31 $22.67 $0.64 2.82%
Saks $4.41 $5.17 -$0.76 -14.70%
Signet $17.56 $15.85 $1.71 10.79%
Sotheby's $11.99 $11.69 $0.30 2.57%
Tiffany $28.20 $28.95 -$0.75 -2.59%
Wal-Mart $49.85 $50.41 -$0.56 -1.11%
Zale $3.70 $3.73 -$0.03 -0.80%

Bulgari €4.10 €3.90 €0.20 5.13%
Bijou Brigitte €87.73 €81.46 €6.27 7.70%
Esa €2.88 €2.74 €0.14 5.11%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,365.00 CHF 1,300.00 CHF 65.00 5.00%
LVMH €58.53 €57.39 €1.14 1.99%
Pinault P-R SA €60.92 €58.45 €2.47 4.23%
Richemont SA CHF 22.38 CHF 20.60 CHF 1.78 8.64%
Swatch Group CHF 177.40 CHF 160.30 CHF 17.10 10.67%
Theo Fennell (pence) 16.70 16.70 €0.00 0.00%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 13.00 13.04 -0.04 -0.31%
Gitanjali Gems 72.25 66.55 5.70 8.56%
Rajesh Exports 29.50 26.70 2.80 10.49%
Ren. Jewellery 26.00 26.65 -0.65 -2.44%
Su-Raj Diamonds 26.90 26.45 0.45 1.70%
Titan 838.70 748.40 90.30 12.07%
Zodiac JRD 13.94 12.60 1.34 10.63%
Suashish Diamonds 163.55 182.00 -18.45 -10.14%

Michael Hill NZD 0.62 NZD 0.55 NZD 0.07 12.73%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $11.59 $10.78 $0.81 7.51%
Archangel CAD 0.08 CAD 0.05 CAD 0.03 60.00%
Harry Winston CAD 6.01 CAD 5.00 CAD 1.01 20.20%
Mountain Province CAD 1.65 CAD 1.28 CAD 0.37 28.91%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.65 CAD 0.59 CAD 0.06 10.17%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.07 CAD 0.06 CAD 0.01 16.67%
Shore Gold CAD 0.41 CAD 0.43 -CAD 0.02 -4.65%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.17 CAD 0.17 CAD 0.00 0.00%
True North Gems CAD 0.09 CAD 0.09 CAD 0.00 0.00%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 31.0 22.7 8.3 36.62%
BHP Billiton 1,513.0 1,424.0 89.0 6.25%
Firestone Diamonds 29.3 27.5 1.9 6.81%
Gem Diamonds 129.5 125.5 4.0 3.19%
Gemfields 4.3 4.3 0.0 0.00%
Mano River 4.0 4.0 0.0 0.50%
Mwana Africa 6.7 5.9 0.8 14.12%
Namakwa Diamonds 32.3 26.0 6.3 24.04%
Petra Diamonds 59.5 47.5 12.0 25.26%
Rio Tinto plc 3,019.0 2,774.5 244.5 8.81%
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Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, May 15, 2009
News: Caution -- large supplies of Zimbabwean rough and resultant polished being offered at 20% or greater discounts in India. Labs have been over grading these stones due to green hue. Polished prices relatively stable as diminished production reduces supply. Consistent demand for 0.50-2.00ct. engagement rings firming prices for corresponding rough. DTC May sight estimated at $250 mil. Dealers preparing for June, Vegas and Hong Kong, shows but keeping expectations low. Indian market on vacation until June. Sotheby's Geneva brings $35.8 mil., (77% by lot) with 7.03 ct., fancy vivid blue, IF, Cushion selling for $9.5 mil. ($1.4 mil./ct.). Christie’s Geneva brings $19.6 mil. (66% by lot). Richemont FY profits -31% to $1.5 bil., sales +2% to $7.4 bil., jewelry sales +4% to $3.8 bil. Bulgari 1Q sales -23% to $243.3 mil., net loss of $40 mil. U.S. March polished imports -53% to $837.2 mil., polished exports -42% to $727.4 mil. Belgium April polished exports -46% to $599.4 mil., rough imports -58% to $399 mil. Israel April polished exports -28% to $269.1 mil., total diamond imports – 62% to $302.3 mil.



Monday, June 1, 2009
Venetian Hotel - San Polo Ballroom (Level 3)

"State of the Diamond Industry" by Martin Rapaport,
8:00-10:00 a.m.

Bankers Conference,
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Fair Trade Jewelry Conference,
1:00 - 4:30 p.m.

Limited Seating. Reserve your space now!

For Additional Rapaport JCK information visit


Rapaport International Diamond Conference
New York City - September 10, 2009

Save the Date
Reserve your space early. Email



Energetic motivated assistant manager
with diamond industry experience and excellent references.
University-educated with fluent English, Gujrati and computer skills.
Resume to:



Pawn Shop Tender – By Appointment Only
June 8-11, 2009

Over 40,000cts of Melee, Rounds and Fancies, -2.5 sieve to 1ct+
from promotional to very fine qualities.
Excellent opportunity for diamond and jewelry
manufacturers specializing in inexpensive diamonds.

Contact Myles Schakler at
or +1-212-354-9800



"The China market is growing fast. Beside the global downturn, which affects every country, China is quite stable....Definitively, we are optimistic....We know Chinese consumers will continue to spend on luxury items. After all, it is a very big pond and in it there is space for many."

Michele Norsa
Chief Executive of Salvatore Ferragamo Italia

World News:

7.03ct Blue Diamond Sells for More Than $1M per Carat

Sotheby’s sale of a 7.03-carat, fancy vivid blue, flawless cushion-shaped diamond fetched almost $9.5 million, or $1,349,752 per carat in Geneva. The winning bidder wished to remain anonymous. Sotheby's noted that this blue diamond beat out the previous most expensive fancy vivid blue diamond sold at auction, and that the sale was a world record for the sale of any diamond at auction in terms of value per carat. Sotheby's total sale of magnificent jewels in Geneva was $35,762,327 and was 76.9 percent sold by lot.

U.S. Dpt. Store Sales Plunge 6%

U.S. department store sales fell 6.1 percent in April 2009 compared with one year ago, to $15.9 billion. The National Retail Federation (NRF) issued a statement saying that U.S. consumers need more proof that the economy is turning around before they will really start discretionary spending again.

U.S. Weekly Chain Store Sales Rise Slightly

Chain store sales in the U.S. rose 0.5 percent for the week that ended May 9, 2009, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs, the first time since early December 2008 that the figure was positive. ICSC Research anticipates that May sales will be flat to down 1 percent, due in part to tax rebates that were disbursed and spent in May 2008.

DTC May Sight Estimated at $250M

The Diamond Trading Company's (DTC) May sight held an estimated value of $250 million. The sight was 25 percent higher than the March/April sight estimate, but still 62 percent lower than one year ago. DTC 2009 sales are expected to fall by about 50 percent, as reflected in the 2009 ITOs. Sales have fallen 73 percent in the first four sights of the calendar year to $660 million. With demand more apparent for certain items, DTC is exploring avenues for allowing sightholders to capitalize on changing trends, such as making goods that are not in the ITOs available to sightholders.

China's Jewelry Exports +4% in '08

China's jewelry exports saw a growth of 4 percent in 2008, in contrast with 17 percent growth in 2007, due to the faltering demand overseas. But sales of jewelry in China are expected top $26.2 billion by 2010, according to the Gems & Jewelry Trade Association of China, as China has become the biggest emerald, jade, pearl and platinum jewelry consumer in the world. China consumed 760,000 ounces of platinum in 2008 — 68 percent of the world's total demand — and 400 tons of gold.

U.S. Myanmar Ruby Ban Hurts Thailand's Gem Sector

The U.S. Tom Lantos Block Burmese JADE Act, which bans exports that bear Burmese gemstones, is having a negative impact on the Thai jewelry sector. The U.S. is currently one of the largest importers of Thai gems and jewelry, accounting for between 13 and 25 percent of exports during the past three years. The U.S. law hasled to a 40 percent year-on-year plunge in Thai exports in the first quarter of 2009. Up to 100,000 people have lost their jobs in the sector. The Thai foreign ministry and the Thai Gem & Jewellery Traders Association (TGJTA) are attempting to negotiate a review of the law.

Zimbabwe Working on New Strategy for Diamonds

The government of Zimbabwe is developing a model for exploiting the controversial Marange diamonds profitably and to prevent them from being banned from the world market. The government plans to identify investors to partner with the poorly equipped Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) in Marange. The government seems unaware of the obstacle posed by African Consolidated Resources PLC, a British company that says it has valid legal title to mining claims on nearly all of the land of the Marange diamond fields.

Rapaport Weekly Broadcast

See the big, bold, beautiful 7.03-carat blue diamond that sold this week at Sotheby's Geneva for almost $9.5 million. The Diamond Trading Company's May sight has now passed us, but the estimated value of goods did not indicate that much in the way of robust sightholder trading is taking place before the JCK Vegas Show.

Diamond Stats:

Belgium April
April % Change YTD 2009 % Change
($ Mil) from '08 ($ Mil) from '08
Polished Exports $599 -46% $2,600 -38%
Polished Imports $669 -43% $2,600 -39%
Net Polished $(69) -13% $45 -7%

Rough Imports $399 -58% $1,600 -59%
Rough Exports $610 -37% $1,700 -58%
Net Rough $(211) N/A $(118) -39%

Net Diamond Acct. $142 $162 -33%

U.S. March
March % Change YTD 2009 % Change
($ Mil) from '08 ($ Mil) from '08
Polished Imports $837 -53% $2,400 -52%
Polished Exports $727 -42% $2,000 -44%
Net Polished $110 -79% $371 -72%

Rough Imports $19 -69% $39 -81%
Rough Exports $11 -73% $31 -75%
Net Rough $8 -62% $8 -74%

Net Diamond Acct. $118 -78% $379 -74%

Hong Kong's Mar. Net Polished Imports $122M

Hong Kong's polished imports for March were $825.6 million. Net polished imports — polished imports less polished exports and re-exports — came to $122 million. Rough imports totaled $59.3 million in March, and rough exports were $47.8 million.

Israel’s April Polished Exports -28%

Israel’s polished diamond exports fell 28 percent to $269.1 million in April. Rough exports dropped 59 percent to $108.3 million, for total combined rough and polished exports of $377.4 million, a fall of 41 percent. Total combined rough and polished imports declined 62 percent to $302.3 million. Israel’s April net diamond account, total diamond exports less imports, was $75.1 million, compared with a deficit of $146.5 million in 2008. For the year to date, polished exports decreased 52 percent to $1.2 billion, and rough exports dropped 68 percent to $435.3 million. Total exports fell 58 percent to $1.6 billion, and total imports declined 69 percent to $992.1 million. Israel’s year-to-date net diamond account fell 11 percent to $649.4 million.

Retail & Wholesale News:

Richemont FY Profits -31%, Sales +2%

Richemont net profit for the fiscal year that ended March 31, 2009, fell 31 percent to $1.5 billion. Sales rose 2 percent to $7.4 billion. The company’s jewelry group, which includes Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels, was the only segment to register an increase in operating profits, up 2 percent to $1.1 billion. Jewelry sales rose 4 percent to $3.8 billion.

Bulgari 1Q Sales -23%, Loss Totals $40M

Bulgari Group reported first-quarter sales fell 23 percent to $243.3 million. The retailer posted a net loss of $40 million compared with a net profit of $31.1 million one year ago. Bulgari’s jewelry sales declined 15 percent to $108.9 million, a drop of 23 percent at fixed exchanged rates. Declines were experienced in all geographic locations.

Macy's 1Q Loss Widens to $88M

Macy's reported a loss of $88 million during its first quarter, or 21 cents per diluted share, compared with a loss of $59 million one year ago. Macy's took $138 million in restructuring charges during the quarter. The retailer reported earlier this month that sales fell 9.5 percent to $5.2 billion during the first quarter, and that same-store sales dropped 9 percent. Online sales were the bright spot, rising 16 percent.

Zodiac 4Q Sales +31%

Zodiac-JRD-MKJ Limited reported that its net sales grew 31 percent to $1.2 million during its fourth fiscal quarter that ended March 31, 2009. Net profits for the period rose 177 percent to $111,497. For the full fiscal year, Zodiac's sales were up 49 percent to $3.6 million, while net profits grew 12 percent to $240,820.

Swank 1Q Sales -3%, Sets Up Office in China

Net sales at Swank fell 3 percent to $24 million during its first quarter. The company had a net loss of $279,000, although this was an improvement from a loss of $411,000 reported one year ago. Sales of men's jewelry and luxury leather goods collections were particularily hard hit. Swank recently set up a representative office in China to give it a stronger Asian presence, in an attempt to position the company well for an eventual economic recovery.

DGSE 1Q Profit -65%, Revenue -20%

DGSE Companies reported that its profit fell 65 percent to $166,040 during its first quarter of fiscal 2009 as revenue fell 19.5 percent to $25.9 million. During the quarter, DGSE launched a new website for its pawnshops at, and after the company discontinued its live auction segment it took steps to integrate the remaining Superior Galleries operations with DGSE's existing activities.

QVC 1Q Jewelry Sales Down, Total Revenue -10%

QVC's first-quarter revenue was down 10 percent to $1.6 billion. In the U.S., QVC's revenue fell 10 percent to $1.1 billion. The proportion of products sold shifted away from the jewelry category to home products and, to a lesser extent, accessories. sales grew to 28 percent of total U.S. sales in the first quarter of 2009, from 24 percent in 2008. QVC's international revenue declined 8 percent to $540 million.

HSN Finds That Self-Improvement is In, Luxury is Out

Home shopping company HSN Inc. found that consumers have shifted away from luxury items and are focusing on self-improvement. HSN sales in its core television shopping division were nearly flat at $474.9 million, but that what HSN customers, almost all of them women, are seeking now is products they can use to improve themselves, that they can use with their families or that can save them money. Anything carrying a whiff of selfish indulgence is not selling well. Sales fell 22 percent to $154.7 million at HSN's catalog business.

Giorgio Armani '08 Jewelry Sales Flat

Giorgio Armani's sales increased 1.5 percent to $2.16 billion in 2008. The company didn't disclose its profit for the year. Sales growth was particularly strong in mainland China, where revenue increased 30 percent. By contrast, revenue in Japan declined 4 percent. Sales of cosmetics, jewelry and watches remained flat.

Christie's Geneva Jewels Sale Tops $19M, 66% Sold by Lot

Christie's Geneva sale of jewels totaled $19,586,628 and was 66 percent sold by lot. The four top lots, all diamonds, sold for more than $1 million each. The top lot was a rectangular-cut, 30.52-carat, D, flawless diamond, which sold for almost $3,173,394, or $104,000 per carat.

Shane Co. Granted Extension to File Turnaround Plan

Bankruptcy court gave Shane Co. a three-month extension, allowing the retailer until August 10, 2009, to file a restructuring plan. If Shane fails to do so, creditors will be able to file competing reorganization plans for the company. Shane was given permission to close three stores in Florida, Georgia and Washington.

Fortunoff IP Auction Includes Jewelry Designs, Customer Data

CONSOR will be auctioning Fortunoff's intellectual property assets on June 18, 2009. The bidding deadline is June 16, and a sale approval court hearing is scheduled for June 22. The Fortunoff asset portfolio includes customer databases containing more than 750,000 names, many of which offer detailed purchase history for jewelry and other items. More than 3,500 exclusive jewelry designs, including the Petra, House 533, House 511, House 513 and Avignon branded Swiss watch collections will be available for bid.

Bank Forecloses on Clark's, Jeweler Files Chpt. 11

Clark’s Fine Jewelry of Wichita, Kansas, filed chapter 11 bankruptcy, with $1.6 million in assets and more than $1 million in liabilities. In April, Legacy Bank filed to foreclose on Clark's, claiming that payment had stopped on the $331,000 mortgage on the jeweler's building. The Kansas Department of Revenue and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) have also claimed unpaid taxes. Clark's will continue to stay in business.

Adylon Diamonds Adds Brick-and-Mortar Store

Adylon Diamonds & Bridal Jewelry opened a showroom in Burbank, California. While Adylon's focus has been on online sales through, the new store allows online customers to inspect diamonds in person. Adylon expects to expand into similar small showrooms in the greater Los Angeles area in coming years. The Burbank showroom offers lifetime upgrade policies, free ring sizing and free cleaning.

Two Class Action Suits Filed Against

Two legal firms, the law offices of Howard G. Smith and Barrack, Rodos & Bacine, have filed separate class-action lawsuits against auction website for securities fraud. On behalf of those who purchased common stock of (BIDZ) between August 13 and November 26, 2007, the two firms allege that inflated the price of its stock by issuing misleading statements that disguised the company's problems. Attorneys for contend that the plaintiff's allegations are without merit, as they are based on a November 2007 report by Citron Research, which has since admitted that it held a short position in stock at the time of the report.

April Abu Dhabi Gold Sales +25%

The volume of retail gold jewelry sales rose 25 to 30 percent in Abu Dhabi in April, as lower prices and the Indian wedding season brought buyers back to the market, after sales volumes of jewelry and gold bars dropped 20 percent in the first quarter of 2009. Indians are among the largest groups of expatriates in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Abu Dhabi has about 85 gold shops and its own jewelry manufacturers. Imports, however, make up almost 60 percent of all jewelry sold at retail outlets there.

Akshaya Tritiya Gold Demand -8% But Sales +14%

Gold demand in India fell by 8 percent to 45 metric tons (49.6 tons) during Akshaya Tritiya, compared with 48.9 metric tons (53.9 tons) one year ago. In value terms, Akshaya Tritiya — April 27, 2009 — witnessed 14 percent increase in sales, from $1.3 billion (INR 63.6 billion) in 2008 to $1.5 billion (INR 72.8 billion) in 2009, mainly because prices were higher this year.

Highlights of Christie's Hong Kong Jewels Sale

Christie’s Hong Kong will hold its magnificent jewels sale on May 26, 2009. Leading the sale is a 20.70-carat, D, flawless diamond pendant, mounted with a 10.07-carat, pear-shaped, D, internally flawless diamond. Both stones are type IIa. Christie's will also auction a suite of 56 colored diamonds in a range of hues, certified as fancy deep, vivid and intense pink, blue, yellow and green, of 14.67 total carat weight, with a presale estimate of between $1.35 million and $1.9 million.

Jetter Taps Nature for a Luxurious Opal Collection

Gemologist and jewelry designer Katherine Jetter will introduce what she calls the "first luxury Australian opal jewelry brand" during the Couture Show in Las Vegas. Jetter’s signature Daintree Rainforest Collection was inspired by the natural landscapes of Australia, where most of the world's opals are found. Jetter maintains a profound passion for the preservation of earth and its wildlife. Packaging for the brand uses ecofriendly, recyclable materials, and 5 percent of all sales proceeds benefit rainforest conservation funds.

Equss Jewellery to Open in Dubai

Australian fashion jewelry brand Equss Jewellery plans to open a flagship outlet at Sunset Mall in Dubai. Sunset Mall, whose soft launch is scheduled for September 2009, will host 97 outlets with a strong retail mix, including high couture boutiques and concept stores.

More Job Cuts At Birks & Mayors

Birks & Mayors has eliminated another 73 full-time staff positions as part of a strategic cost-saving exercise, that will save the company approximately $2.5 million a year. Since the beginning of 2009, Birks & Mayors has eliminated 150 positions, or 15 percent of its workforce. Combined with salary reductions, the job cuts are expected to reduce the company’s operating expenses by $9.5 million annually.

Luxury Brands Look to China Amid Global Crisis

High-end designers and luxury retailers are looking to well-heeled Chinese shoppers to drive sales as demand in other countries collapses. Just as more mainstream brands are expanding fast in China, brands such as Salvatore Ferragamo and Gucci are adding stores there. China's $8 billion luxury market accounts for just 3 percent of global sales, but China and Brazil are projected to be the two fastest-growing luxury markets for the five years through 2012, according Bain & Co. China's sales of designer clothing, jewelry and other goods will climb 7 percent this year while the industry's worldwide revenue could fall 10 percent. Luxury sales in China surged 25 percent in 2008 while global growth was flat.

Gemfields Appoints Banks as Product Director

Gemfields Resources appointed Adrian Banks as product director to manage the company's rough supply chain, including grading, quality assurance, trading and sales systems. Banks will serve as Gemfield's key customer interface for rough gemstone trading and sales, and will report to the board of directors. Previously, Banks spent a decade with TanzaniteOne, where he was instrumental in developing a shareholder system.

Simon Golub & Sons to Distribute Hot Diamonds Brands in U.S.

Simon Golub & Sons was given exclusive rights to import and distribute U.K.-based Hot Diamonds jewelry brands in the U.S. Inventory and operations will be handled out of Simon Golub & Sons' home office in Seattle, Washington, beginning June 1, 2009.

Mendis, Luma Partner to Create ML Fine Jewelry

Mendis International, a spirits company, and gemologist Jean Luma are creating a fine jewelry collection under the brand name ML. Luma's design house, Luxe Coterie, will be creating customized jewelry under the ML name, which will be paired with bottles of a limited run of Mendis Coconut Brandy.

Capital Grace Orders $4M in Diamond Jewelry from Kanani

Capital Grace of Hong Kong has awarded an order for supplies of diamond jewelry worth $3.96 million to Kanani Industries. Kanani will deliver the jewelry within eight months of the date of the purchase order. The company will manufacture the jewelry at its new factory in the Special Economic Zone at Surat in Gujarat. Targets Future Grooms

XY Internet, the owner of, has launched a new website called, to fill the need for a wedding planning website targeted toward grooms. offers men advice for getting engaged and choosing a diamond ring, as well as tips for planning the wedding, the honeymoon and the bachelor party. The website has a blog, community forum and an "ask the expert" column.

General News:

Paris Police Capture Two Alleged 'Pink Panther' Members

Two Serbs, 36-year-old Nicolai Ivanovic and 38-year-old Zoran Kostic, were arrested in the Pigalle entertainment district of Paris, and are alleged to be members of the "Pink Panther" gang of international jewel thieves. They are being held for carrying false identity documents, but are expected to face charges related to the Pink Panthers' series of crimes, in which they stole jewels worth a total of at least $140 million.

Feds are Sole Owners of Giant Gem

A federal judge in Akron, Ohio, has ruled that the 43.51-carat yellow Golden Eye diamond seized more than two years ago in a local FBI sting belongs solely to the U.S. government. Ownership claims by several parties were rejected. The diamond, worth $15 million according to its previous owner, will be sold at auction, with the money raised going to law enforcement agencies involved in the investigation.

Robbers Snatch $1M in Goods from Gioia Galleria

Police say two robbers snatched a pair of diamond earrings and a diamond ring worth a total of more than $1 million on May 7, 2009, from Gioia Galleria in New York while security guards were at lunch. Investigators say that Rafaela Amini, the store's co-owner, buzzed the robbers into the store, whereupon they doused her with pepper spray, knocked her to the ground and kicked her in the head. She was treated at a hospital and released. Police have made no arrests.

New Name, Logo for London Diamond Bourse & Club

The London Diamond Bourse & Club has changed its name to the London Diamond Bourse. The bourse has adopted a new logo and will soon launch a new website.

ICA Congress Attracts Record Crowd

The International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA) Congress closed its doors Sunday evening after a six-day event in the city of Panyu, China. The attendance was the largest in ICA’s history, with 200 overseas delegates from 26 countries and more than 750 local Chinese participants. Much of the discussion revolved around a project for the standardization of colored gemstones in China.

Sarin Technologies 1Q Revenues -90%, Records Loss

Sarin Technologies' revenues fell 90 percent compared with 2008, to $1.1 million, for the three months that ended March 31, 2009. The maker of tools for the diamond industry reported a net loss of $2.5 million, compared with profits of $2 million a year earlier. Sarin reported that revenues from its biggest market, India, fell 91 percent to $720,000.

Antwerp Diamond Bourse Tenants' Appeal for Rent Reduction

The tenants of Antwerp's diamond bourse, facing increasingly difficult economic times in the sector, have submitted a petition to their board of directors in order to reduce the rent of their offices. They have been repeatedly refused dialogue with the board of directors, and so were forced to put their demands to a vote at the annual general assembly on May 12. Results of that meeting have not yet been reported.

Diamond Mining:

Russia Stockpiles Gems

ALROSA has not sold rough on the open market since December, stockpiling them instead. In an attempt to carefully re-enter the global market without forcing prices still lower, Russia is relying on two things: the Gokhran precious gem depository will buy up ALROSA rough, and investors, whom the company hopes will buy rough diamonds as an investment. ALROSA is seeking to jump-start demand by selling gems under long-term contracts to wholesalers in Belgium, Israel, India and elsewhere. Six of these contracts have been signed, with prices set at a midpoint between the peak last August and the low point in the first quarter of 2009, and fixed for a period of several years.

Petra Diamonds Responds to 'Cruel Fate of Miners' Story

Petra Diamonds responded to a news story concerning workers at its Cullinan diamond mine that was published in the U.K.'s Observer, saying that it contained many inaccurate statements. The Observer article quoted miners and union representatives saying that race relations were poor at the mine and that the white supervisors pay black workers up to $1,184.06 (ZAR 10,000) less per month than white workers doing the same job. The story claimed that the 7.03-carat blue diamond that sold recently in Geneva for $9.5 million was probably discovered by a diamond sorter paid only $710.44 (ZAR 6,000) a month, as opposed to salaries of $3,552.19 (ZAR 30,000) for controllers. Petra responded that its hiring practices adhere to the highest ethical standards. The blue diamond sold in Geneva was not recovered by an individual mineworker, the company contended, but was recovered in the normal course of the mining and recovery plant process, which is mostly automated.

Pangea DiamondFields' Bakerville Tender Worth $240K

Pangea DiamondFields generated $239,776 at the second diamond tender from its Bakerville project in South Africa. The tender sold 1,016 carats at an average $236 per carat, well below the average price achieved to date from the project. The first tender of diamonds from the project held in July 2008 achieved an average price of $1,448 per carat. Pilot mining on the project began in November.

Saad Denies Kopane Merger Rumor

Saad Investments, the majority shareholder in Petra Diamonds, denied it was bidding for ownership of Kopane Diamond Developments. London press reported that Saad was to have made a takeover offer of 22 pence a share for the nearly 30 percent of Kopane that is owned by Obtala Resources, after which it will bid for the whole company. Obtala week raised its stake in Kopane to 29.75 percent, which it has agreed to sell to Saad, the London Times wrote. Saad Investments has dismissed the report, however, saying it has no interest in buying Kopane.

Diamonds North Finds Gold on Amaruk

Diamonds North Resources identified gold mineralization on its Amaruk property in Nunavut, Canada, following the company's recent finding of a new diamond district and a nickel prospect at Amaruk. A reconnaissance sample on the claim yielded 5.8 grams of gold per metric ton. Exploration plans will continue in conjunction with other metal opportunities on Amaruk.

Econ Watch:

For the week ending May 14, 2009

May. 14 May. 7 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.730 0.746 -0.016
$1 = Rupee 49.6 49.1 0.5
$1 = Israel Shekel 4.13 4.12 0.01
$1 = Rand 8.54 8.41 0.13
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.17 1.16 0.01

Precious Metals
Gold $925.70 $910.50 $15.20
Platinum $1,111.00 $1,145.00 -$34.00

Stock Indexes Chng.
BSE 11,872.91 12,116.94 -244.03 -2.01%
Dow Jones Avg. 8,330.37 8,409.70 -79.33 -0.94%
FTSE 4,362.58 4,398.68 -36.10 -0.82%
Hang Seng 16,541.69 17,217.89 -676.20 -3.93%
S & P 500 893.03 907.36 -14.33 -1.58%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 690.73 764.25 -73.52 -9.62%

Birks & Mayors $0.46 $0.46 $0.00 0.00%
Blue Nile $42.18 $44.61 -$2.43 -5.45%
Charles & Colvard $0.52 $0.44 $0.08 18.18%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $1.00 $1.00 $0.00 0.00%
Fuqi International $6.49 $7.34 -$0.85 -11.58%
JCPenney $26.59 $30.04 -$3.45 -11.48%
Kohl's $41.39 $44.29 -$2.90 -6.55%
Lazare Kaplan $1.88 $1.60 $0.28 17.50%
LJ International $1.26 $1.36 -$0.10 -7.35%
Macy's $11.30 $12.81 -$1.51 -11.79%
Man Sang $2.15 $2.21 -$0.06 -2.71%
Movado Group $7.21 $8.76 -$1.55 -17.69%
Nordstrom $20.88 $23.31 -$2.43 -10.42%
Saks $3.58 $4.41 -$0.83 -18.82%
Signet $16.11 $17.56 -$1.45 -8.26%
Sotheby's $10.62 $11.99 -$1.37 -11.43%
Tiffany $25.44 $28.20 -$2.76 -9.79%
Wal-Mart $49.23 $49.85 -$0.62 -1.24%
Zale $3.08 $3.70 -$0.62 -16.76%

Bulgari €3.79 €4.10 -€0.31 -7.56%
Bijou Brigitte €89.99 €87.73 €2.26 2.58%
Esa €2.82 €2.88 -€0.06 -2.08%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,500.00 CHF 1,365.00 CHF 135.00 9.89%
LVMH €57.38 €58.53 -€1.15 -1.96%
Pinault P-R SA €55.44 €60.92 -€5.48 -9.00%
Richemont SA CHF 22.00 CHF 22.38 -CHF 0.38 -1.70%
Swatch Group CHF 167.50 CHF 177.40 -CHF 9.90 -5.58%
Theo Fennell (pence) 19.00 16.70 €2.30 13.77%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 12.38 13.00 -0.62 -4.77%
Gitanjali Gems 71.10 72.25 -1.15 -1.59%
Rajesh Exports 29.15 29.50 -0.35 -1.19%
Ren. Jewellery 27.65 26.00 1.65 6.35%
Su-Raj Diamonds 25.50 26.90 -1.40 -5.20%
Titan 868.20 838.70 29.50 3.52%
Zodiac JRD 13.50 13.94 -0.44 -3.16%
Suashish Diamonds 145.80 163.55 -17.75 -10.85%

Michael Hill NZD 0.62 NZD 0.62 NZD 0.00 0.00%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $11.15 $11.59 -$0.44 -3.80%
Archangel CAD 0.05 CAD 0.08 -CAD 0.03 -37.50%
Harry Winston CAD 5.80 CAD 6.01 -CAD 0.21 -3.49%
Mountain Province CAD 1.55 CAD 1.65 -CAD 0.10 -6.06%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.58 CAD 0.65 -CAD 0.07 -10.77%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.06 CAD 0.07 -CAD 0.01 -14.29%
Shore Gold CAD 0.66 CAD 0.41 CAD 0.25 60.98%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.16 CAD 0.17 -CAD 0.01 -3.03%
True North Gems CAD 0.10 CAD 0.09 CAD 0.01 11.11%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 28.5 31.0 -2.5 -8.13%
BHP Billiton 1,392.0 1,513.0 -121.0 -8.00%
Firestone Diamonds 37.8 29.3 8.5 28.88%
Gem Diamonds 181.8 129.5 52.3 40.35%
Gemfields 4.5 4.3 0.3 5.88%
Mano River 4.0 4.0 0.0 0.00%
Mwana Africa 6.1 6.7 -0.6 -9.09%
Namakwa Diamonds 32.8 32.3 0.5 1.55%
Petra Diamonds 46.5 59.5 -13.0 -21.85%
Rio Tinto plc 2,594.0 3,019.0 -425.0 -14.08%

India Market:
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Registrovaný uživatel
Rapaport TradeWire - Friday, June 19, 2009
News: Indian manufacturers pushing demand for rough as they resume manufacturing. Indians have also begun cutting Princess shapes after a long break. Diamond jewelry sales improving in U.S. Higher prices of 10% to 15% reported at BHP Billiton rough tender. DTC June sight estimated at $425 mil. Christie’s New York brings $11.4 mil. (91% by lot), with pear-shaped fancy intense 6.29-carat blue, IF diamond selling for $3.6 mil. ($565,103/ct.). Finlay Enterprises 1Q sales +12% to $159.3 mil., net loss of $28.7 mil., vs loss of $11 mil. South Africa April diamond production -65%.


Rapaport International Diamond Conference
New York City - September 10, 2009

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Retail Quote:

"[Closing Halston's Fine Jewelry] was not planned, but we sat down and thought about it. We kind of want to go in a different direction. Our customers are really sad. That has made our decision even sadder. I had one lady who burst into tears on the phone. It has been a wonderful business, and I love it very much, but I am old enough to retire."

Gayle Kushner
Halston's Fine Jewelry, Port Orange, Florida

World News:

DTC June Sight Estimate $425M, High Demand Raises Questions

The Diamond Trading Company (DTC) June sight is estimated to have been the largest so far this year, at $425 million. The sight one year ago June was estimated at $700 million. While sightholders were clearly in the mood to buy rough goods, few could explain the surge in demand, as trends in the polished market remain weak. DTC June prices were relatively consistent with a month ago, with some adjustments on prices for smaller, lower-quality goods.

South Africa's April Diamond Production -65%

South Africa’s diamond production fell 62 percent by volume in April 2009 compared with one year earlier. The country’s total mineral production for the month declined 11 percent, with gold production down 13 percent and non-gold production decreasing 10 percent, year on year.

U.S. Jewelry CPI +1% in May

The consumer price index (CPI) for jewelry in the U.S. rose 1.2 percent year-on-year to 154.72 points during the month of May. The index dropped almost 3.3 points from its reading in April. The monthly index is based upon a reference point of average prices in 1986, which is set at 100 points. For the watch and jewelry categories combined, the index for May inched 1.3 percent higher from one year ago to 147.5 points.

Weekly Chain Store Sales Drop More Than 1%

Weekly chain store sales in the U.S. dropped 1.5 percent for the week that ended June 13, 2009, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs. ICSC noted that rising gasoline prices have pressured consumers to remain cautious on discretionary spending. For June, ICSC anticipates that sales will be down by about 5 percent, compared with the 4.6 percent decline in May.

Diamond News Broadcast

As the diamond pipeline continues to reinvent itself, given the steady drop in consumer demand, two Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sightholders in Canada have had to drastically reduce or end operations in the Northwest Territories. However, a third sightholder reports that this is a time of opportunity to grow. Dylan Dix, marketing director of Crossworks Manufacturing (SunDiamond), discusses his company's approach given this new industry era.

Retail & Wholesale:

Finlay 1Q Loss Deepens, Some Vendors Extend Grace Period

Inventory liquidation boosted Finlay's first-quarter sales 12 percent to $159.3 million; however, the company reported a loss of $28.7 million, widened from a loss of $11 million. Department store sales increased 50 percent to $96.9 million, as Finlay continued to exit these store counters during the quarter. Specialty store sales fell 20 percent to $62.5 million. Finlay saw an operating loss at its standalone jewelry stores of $12.1 million in the first quarter, up from a loss of $1.3 million one year ago. Since Finlay decided to exit department stores and close nearly half its specialty stores, it expects to record between $10 million and $12 million for severance and retention costs, lease termination costs and other items this fiscal year. Once the company's strategic plan, which Finlay has vowed to complete this year, is implemented, sales of more than $750 million in 2008 will be reduced to fall somewhere between $150 million to $200 million on an annual basis.

Finlay stated that its revolving credit facility was reduced to $216.6 million. It has not met certain credit agreement targets, and lenders have thus imposed penalty interest rates. Some of those holding third lien notes on trade debt of about $25 million, entered into agreements with Finlay to a deferred payment schedule until October. Finlay has paid the first two scheduled installments, and three remain. In a seperate notice, Finlay announced it was seeking buyers for all or part of its assets.

Bulgari Increases Bond Offer to $208M

Bulgari hopes to raise $208.5 million (EUR 150 million) in an equity linked bond offering, increasing its initial estimate of $180 million (EUR 130 million). The bond offer was launched on June 10, 2009, with the option to increase if Goldman Sachs fully exercised its over-allotment option. Settlement and delivery of the bonds, which are due in 2014, will take place on or around July 8. Goldman Sachs upgraded its rating on Bulgari to "buy" from "sell" and lifted the share price target on the jeweler to EUR 4.70 from EUR 3.60.

Another Success for Christie’s NY

Christie’s New York's small, 184-lot, end of season sale on June 11 sold 91 percent by lot and 86 percent by value. The auction tallied up $11,367,875, with diamonds making a strong showing. The top lot — a pear-shaped fancy intense internally flawless 6.29-carat blue diamond — sold for $3,554,500. The highly touted blue diamonds were the stars of the show, with a 3.28-carat modified rectangular-cut fancy dark gray-blue diamond selling for $386,500, the fifth biggest lot. Two blue rose-cut diamonds, however, failed to sell.

Flawless Diamond Gets $2M Order

Flawless Diamond received two orders, expected to close within six months, worth a combined $2.3 million. The larger order, for $1.2 million, came from Hong Kong-based Malay Impex, and the other was from Dubai-based Madrid Impex for $1.1 million. Flawless also entered into a long-term marketing agreement, under which Malay Impex and Madrid Impex will market its diamond and jewelry products in their respective markets. Believing that the gold, diamond and jewelry markets have started to revive, the company has announced plans to aggressively pursue its export business.

The Forevermark Precious Collection Unveiled

Forevermark has unveiled the Forevermark Precious Collection™ in Japan. Forevermark invited a number of internationally renowned designers and a group of equally famous writers to createdesigns and write stories inspired by the word ‘precious.’ The Forevermark Precious Collection™ showcases these interpretations of ‘precious,’ both in Forevermark diamonds and in words.

New Look for Michael Hill Stores, U.S. Market Still Tough

In attempt to build its brand, Michael Hill is about to unveil two stores with a new look, in New Zealand next month. The new format has a subtle, European look, with "moody" lighting. Meanwhile, Michael Hill is fighting to keep its 17 new locations afloat in the U.S. given the new conservative consumer economy.

Peter Burrowes Launches New Website

London jeweler Peter Burrowes launched a new website in response to customers’ growing desire to buy watch and jewelry products online. Features of the e-commerce website, which sells a wide range of leading fashion watch and jewelry brands, include a company blog that provides fashion tips. A "reserve and pick up in shop service" will come online soon.

Industry Welcomes Proposed Parallel Trading Channel

Botswana is going ahead with plans to create a parallel trading platform alongside the Diamond Trading Company (DTC), a move that has been welcomed by many in the industry. Akolang Tombale, the head of the Botswana Diamond Hub, said the parallel platform will have two objectives: To liberalize diamond-price discovery and to have an input in the current DTC sightholder system.

JCOC Survey: Weddings Delayed, No Internet Love for Rings

The bridal study conducted by the Jewelry Consumer Opinion Council (JCOC), revealed that the economy is taking a toll on wedding plans. Even though the study only had 362 online participants, 25 percent said that the wedding plans had been postponed due to the recession. Of those grooms who had not yet purchased engagement and wedding rings, 36 percent said that their budget for the rings will now be lower by 15 percent or more. National jewelry stores topped grooms' choices for ring purchases, with 43 percent, followed by local jewelry stores, with 36 percent, the Internet with 7 percent, and websites of chain retailers, with 7 percent. Of 30 surveyed brides-to-be, 48 percent had lowered their budget for rings due to the recession, 23 percent lowering it by 15 percent or more. The brides split between buying rings at national chains or from local jewelers, both at 29 percent. None of the brides would buy from the Internet; 3 percent, however, selected retail store websites.

Helzberg Diamonds Joins

Helzberg Diamonds signed up as a diamond retail partner with's diamond partners already included Fred Meyer, Gordon's, JCPenney, Kay Jewelers, Kohl's, Littman Jewelers, Macy's, Sears and Zales.

Stuckey Expands Distribution of 'The Brides Pendant' to Online

Stuckey launched an e-commerce website for its The Brides Pendant collection, which was originally created in 2007 and initially distributed only through independent brick-and-mortar retailers. Stuckey also created a YouTube channel for The Brides Pendant, featuring comments from jewelers who sell the collection.

Hoover & Strong Merges with Keystone Findings

Hoover & Strong merged with Keystone Findings in order to broaden its product offerings. Keystone's Telford, Pennsylvania, plant will be transported to Hoover & Strong’s Richmond, Virginia, facility during the coming weeks. Order fulfillment and customer service for both companies will remain fully operational during the transition period.

Gitanjali Forms JV with Damas, Sells Stake in Ivida

Gitanjali Lifestyle, a subsidiary of Gitanjali Gems, has set up a joint jewelry retail venture in India with Damas of Dubai. Damas received the necessary approval from India's Foreign Investment Promotion Board on June 4. Gitanjali also sold its stake in Ivida Technologies due to poor performance. The company did not disclose the financial details of the sale.

Robbins Brothers to Hold Diamond Dig Promotion

Robbins Brothers, which recently emerged from bankruptcy reorganization, is running a "diamond dig" promotion through its southern California stores. Contestants who register at one of four Robbins Brothers locations between June 11 and 29 will dig between first and third bases after an Orange County Flyers baseball doubleheader at Cal State Fullerton's Goodwin Field on July 5. Ten buried Robbins Brothers lighted ring boxes will contain gift certificates and diamond prizes, including one 0.5-carat solitaire ring. Registrants will be given a complimentary ticket to the game.

Damas Features Notturno During Shopping Festival

Damas Jewellery presented Utopia's Notturno collection at its stores in Dubai especially for the summer shopping festival, which is underway and continues through August 14, 2009. Notturno, a collection of jewelry that blends white gold, diamonds and pearls, was inspired by the musical composition of the same name.

Denhams Jewelers Poised for Sparkling Future

Sarah Stamp, who previously owned half of Denhams in Leicester, U.K., has bought the rest of the business from James and Jane Jackson for an undisclosed sum. Stamp, who has worked at the company for 20 years, said that trade was booming despite the recession and that she plans to expand. Sales rose to about $820,000, a record, in the year that ended on March 31, 2009, and are on track to increase again this year.

OneWed Launches Ring Gallery, Platinum Ring Contest

Wedding vendor aggregator website introduced a wedding and engagement ring gallery with ring and diamond descriptions. The site also partnered with Platinum Guild International to offer a chance to win matching $4,500 Kirk Kara Platinum wedding bands. Brides-to-be must submit how they would or will pop the question. The contest ends July 15, 2009.

Fred Meyer Jewelers Joins RJC

Fred Meyer Jewelers joined the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC), and affirmed its commitment to building a responsible supply chain. Fred Meyer Jewelers was founded in 1973, and currently has 400 stores across the U.S.

10% of Shopittome Users Would Splurge on Jewelry

An online survey conducted by found that 49 percent of its registered users were spending less on clothing and accessories online this year, that 16 percent were spending more, and about one third were spending the same amount. Thirty-eight percent said they were not splurging on special items, but 10 percent reported that they would spending on jewelry.

Pure Gold Jewellers Celebrates 20 Years

To celebrate its 20th anniversary, United Arab Emirates (UAE)-based jewelry retailer Pure Gold Jewellers is running a promotion through August 14, 2009, in which customers who purchase diamond jewelry will get a discount scratch card. The discount listed on the card, ranging from 65 to 100 percent, is valid on those items already invoiced to the customer.

De Beers Expects Brighter Christmas

Speaking in Israel at the second of the company’s series of town hall meetings with the industry, Gareth Penny, De Beers managing director, observed that the diamond sector may be on its way out of the downturn, but with “great caution.” De Beers is expecting the Christmas season to be “in line with if not better than last year.” To weather the current slump, De Beers has taken a five-point approach and urged the industry to do the same: Confident leadership, a focus on cash management, acting swiftly to reduce overhead costs, a focus on core business activity and solidifying partnerships with customers.

Who is News:

Cyanide Suspected in Jewelry Store Death

Sushil Bhalla, 46, of Edison, New Jersey, died June 15 in his jewelry store, Aabhushan Family Jewelers, possibly overcome from the cyanide he was using to work on jewelry. Authorities discovered a small bucket of cyanide, but were uncertain if Bhalla died from exposure to the chemical or had a heart attack.

Southfield Jeweler Pleads Guilty to Money Laundering

Gary Yee, who operated Golden Sun Jewelry in Southfield, Michigan, pleaded guilty to a money laundering charge on June 16, 2009, and agreed to forfeit $1 million. The U.S. Department of Justice for the Eastern District of Michigan reported that Yee laundered more than $1.5 million in cash for narcotics traffickers, including notorious Detroit dealers and criminals from as far away as Arizona.

Man Pleads Not Guilty to Jewel Heist Death

Marion Pegese of Pennsylvania pleaded not guilty to a charge of second-degree murder and 18 charges of robbery for his involvement in a $1 million jewelry store heist that left two dead. Pegese was allegedly one of four men who robbed a New Hartford jewelry store in February 2006. While fleeing with jewelry and diamonds, the robbers fatally shot central New York police officer Joseph Corr in the neck. The shooter was killed in the ensuing shootout. One of the other accomplices has been sentenced to 300 years and the other is due to be charged.

New Boards Elected at Tokyo and Italian Bourses

Two members of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) — the Tokyo Diamond Exchange (TDE) and the Borsa Diamanti D'Italia (BDI) — have voted in new boards. TDE elected Michio Iwasakia a senior director of the Jewellers Association of Japan (JJA) and chair of the JJA's Public Information Commission, as its new president. Ernesto Colombi, the longtime president of BDI, was elected to serve another term.

Taylor to Take the Stand July 13

The defense case of Charles Taylor, former President of Liberia, will open before the Special Court for Sierra Leone on July 13. Taylor is expected to be the first witness to take the stand. His defense was initially set to start on June 29, but the date was challenged by Taylor's lawyers, who said they would not be ready. In January, the 91st and final prosecution witness in Taylor's trial told judges how he had pleaded with rebels to cut off his remaining hand so they would spare his toddler son.


Security Survey Reveals Increase in Retail Shrinkage

Retail shrinkage — inventory loss due to theft, fraud or paperwork error — increased in 2008 to 1.52 percent of retail sales, according to the National Retail Federation's (NRF) latest annual security survey, up from 1.44 percent in 2007. Total retail losses increased to $36.5 billion, up from $34.8 billion. The majority was due to employee theft, which accounted for total losses of $15.9 billion; 14 percent of those cases involved collusion with outsiders. Shoplifting accounted for $12.7 billion. Ninety-two percent of retailers noted that they had been victims of organized retail crime rings in 2008, and 73 percent said that the problem is worsening.

GJEPC Plans India Diamond & ColourStone Show

The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) has organized a business-to-business event called the India Diamond & Colourstone Show, which will be held August 4 and 5, 2009, in Mumbai, as a lead-in to the 26th annual India International Jewellery Show (IIJS) that begins August 6. The show will provide buyers with an exclusive opportunity to source loose stones. Buyers will be permitted to place orders, but direct cash-and-carry sales will not be permitted.

FACETS Show Brings Exhibitors to Sri Lanka

The 19th annual FACETS international gem and jewelry exhibition, which will be held this September in Colombo, Sri Lanka, has already confirmed buyers from China, Russia, Thailand, India and Hong Kong, and exhibitors from China, India and Myanmar. The exhibition is a chance for Sri Lanka's gem and jewelry industry to build relationships with these buyers from abroad.

AGS Updates Altobelli's Appraisal Book

The American Gem Society (AGS) has published an updated third edition of The Practical Guide to Jewelry Appraising, appraisal expert Cosmo Altobelli’s book. The new edition features new and updated resource websites, sample letters and forms, metal pricing charts, gemstone weight estimation charts and information on cut grades from both the AGS and Gemological Institute of America (GIA). The book costs $69.

WFDB To Hold 2009 Asia Summit

The World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) will hold a special 2009 WFDB Asia Summit Meeting on June 29. The aim is to involve the bourses in Bangkok, Hong Kong, Mumbai, Singapore, Shanghai and Tokyo more intensively in the activities of the WFDB, and to determine which services the bourses need most from the umbrella organization and what assistance these bourses can extend in turn to WFDB members worldwide. The summit meeting will be hosted by the Diamond Federation of Hong Kong.

Surat Diamond Units Hunt for Talent

Surat Diamond firms, searching for skilled manpower, have been conducting campus interviews at the Indian Diamond Institute (IDI) in Katargam. K. G. Kothari & Sons of Mumbai interviewed 22 production students and added 14 to a short list for a second interview. Sheetal Creations and Kiran Jewellers, both from Sachin, interviewed a total of 30 candidates for a design position. Sachin-based Gunjan Export wanted diamond grading specialists.

EGL Asia Signs Agreement with China's

EGL Asia and announced an agreement at the Hong Kong Jewelry and Watch Fair, under which EGL Asia will be the exclusive grader and provider of certificates for loose diamonds and diamond-set jewelry sold on the website. plays a leading role in China's online diamond and jewelry retail sector, selling either directly to customers or through designated stores. EGL Asia is one of the best-known gemological laboratories in Hong Kong.

Diamond Mining:

Archangel '08 Loss +72% to $9M, 1Q Loss Improves

Archangel Diamond Corporation, in its long-delayed financial results for the year 2008, stated that its assets dropped 36 percent to $700,891 and liabilities rose more than 252 percent to $11.7 million. The mining company's net loss for 2008 rose 72 percent to $8.8 million. Archangel also filed first-quarter results, which showed a loss of $703,658, down from a loss of almost $2 million one year earlier, and cash on hand of $29,607, down from $1 million a year ago. The mining company stated that its ability to continue as going concern is contingent upon shareholder support and its ability to raise more cash. A private placement of $13.75 million that was announced on June 4 fell through.

ALROSA-Nyurba Pays Parent Company Smaller Dividend

ALROSA-Nyurba will pay ALROSA, its parent company, $59.1 million in dividends for 2008. The company's shareholders voted at their annual general meeting to pay $16.05 per share, or a total of $12.8 million, to shareholders for the fourth quarter of 2008, on top of the $54.6 million in interim dividends that were paid for the nine months that ended September 30. ALROSA-Nyurba paid $89.9 million in dividends for 2007. ALROSA owns 88.28 percent of ALROSA-Nyurba.

African Diamonds Reaffirms Plans for AK6

African Diamonds supports its long-held belief that it can mine the AK6 project cheaper than De Beers, its partner in the joint venture. African Diamonds has proposed development of the mine at $50 million initially, followed by $35 million, to yield 800,000 carats per year. If De Beers, which African Diamonds has accused of unnecessarily delaying the project after it struggled to raise funds to develop AK6 as a $320 million mine, declines to proceed with the project, African Diamonds says it will offer to take over 100 percent control.

Firestone Diamonds to Commission New Plant

Firestone Diamonds will commission its $7.5 million plant at the Bk11 project near Orapa by the end of this month, and the mining company is putting all its resources behind its BK11 diamond project in order to begin production on schedule in June 2010. Firestone is also preparing to move one of its plants, with a production capacity of 1.5 metric tons (1.7 tons) per year, to Botswana from a previous project in South Africa.

Nigeria Mining Output to Account for 20% of GDP

Dieziani Alison-Madueke, Nigeria's minister of mines and steel development, said that the mining sector would contribute 20 percent to the gross domestic product (GDP) within 10 years, which is a dramatic increase from the current 0.5 percent. It also overshadows the government's earlier prediction of 5 percent by 2019. Alison-Madueke said Nigeria's gemstones were among the best in the world, but the local mining industry lacks the capacity, tools and upgraded processing plants to bring them succesfully to market.

Shareholders Keep Rockwell's Execs, Shareholder Rights Plan

With three quarters of Rockwell's issued and outstanding shares voting in the special shareholder vote that was ordered by Pala Investments — which owns approximately 20 percent of the shares in the diamond miner — more than 57 percent of the votes were cast against removing any member of the board of directors. Approximately 62 percent of cast votes favored the existing shareholder rights plan, and 57 percent voted not to reimburse Pala for its costs associated with the special meeting. Rockwell's executive directors did, however, decide to remove the Fair Rights Offering from the meeting agenda.

Sierra Leone Committee Approves Draft of Mining Act

The 2009 draft of Sierra Leone's mines and mineral act has been reviewed and intends to give the government more control of and ability to monitor the activities of mining companies to maximize the benefit from diamonds for the country and its people. It also intends to ensure that child labor is entirely discouraged. The act must be approved by the cabinet, followed by Parliament, in order to become law.

Econ Watch:

Week ending June 18, 2009

June.11 June.11 Chng.
$1 = Euro 0.719 0.715 0.004
$1 = Rupee 48.1 47.6 0.5
$1 = Israel Shekel 3.96 3.91 0.05
$1 = Rand 8.17 7.95 0.22
$1 = Canadian Dollar 1.13 1.11 0.02

Precious Metals
Gold $932.30 $954.60 -$22.30
Platinum $1,201.00 $1,263.00 -$62.00

Stock Indexes Chng.
BSE 14,265.53 15,411.47 -1,145.94 -7.44%
Dow Jones Avg. 8,555.60 8,770.92 -215.32 -2.45%
FTSE 4,280.86 4,461.87 -181.01 -4.06%
Hang Seng 17,776.66 18,791.03 -1,014.37 -5.40%
S & P 500 918.37 944.89 -26.52 -2.81%
Yahoo! Jewelry Index 699.53 765.35 -65.82 -8.60%

Birks & Mayors $0.65 $0.55 $0.10 18.18%
Blue Nile $40.50 $46.56 -$6.06 -13.02%
Charles & Colvard $0.52 $0.51 $0.01 1.96%
DGSE Companies, Inc. $1.10 $1.05 $0.05 4.76%
Fuqi International $16.13 $17.32 -$1.19 -6.87%
JCPenney $25.90 $27.92 -$2.02 -7.23%
Kohl's $43.69 $45.92 -$2.23 -4.86%
Lazare Kaplan $2.32 $2.77 -$0.45 -16.25%
LJ International $1.74 $2.10 -$0.36 -17.14%
Macy's $10.63 $12.00 -$1.37 -11.42%
Man Sang $2.40 $3.39 -$0.99 -29.20%
Movado Group $11.03 $12.05 -$1.02 -8.46%
Nordstrom $18.98 $20.52 -$1.54 -7.50%
Saks $3.87 $3.76 $0.11 2.93%
Signet $18.49 $21.09 -$2.60 -12.33%
Sotheby's $13.57 $14.05 -$0.48 -3.42%
Tiffany $25.73 $27.80 -$2.07 -7.45%
Wal-Mart $48.68 $49.32 -$0.64 -1.30%
Zale $3.31 $3.91 -$0.60 -15.35%

Bulgari €4.03 €3.92 €0.11 2.81%
Bijou Brigitte €94.01 €96.55 -€2.54 -2.63%
Esa €3.04 €2.87 €0.17 5.92%
Golay-Buchel CHF 1,625.00 CHF 1,590.00 CHF 35.00 2.20%
LVMH €55.83 €59.70 -€3.87 -6.48%
Pinault P-R SA €55.30 €62.83 -€7.53 -11.98%
Richemont SA CHF 21.84 CHF 23.76 -CHF 1.92 -8.08%
Swatch Group CHF 165.70 CHF 188.10 -CHF 22.40 -11.91%
Theo Fennell (pence) 30.20 33.88 -3.68 -10.86%

INDIA (rupee)
Classic Diamond 16.40 17.65 -1.25 -7.08%
Gitanjali Gems 112.90 138.35 -25.45 -18.40%
Rajesh Exports 43.70 52.65 -8.95 -17.00%
Ren. Jewellery 32.50 38.00 -5.50 -14.47%
Su-Raj Diamonds 35.00 40.90 -5.90 -14.43%
Titan 1,167.20 1,206.65 -39.45 -3.27%
Zodiac JRD 16.70 18.00 -1.30 -7.22%
Suashish Diamonds 182.90 176.90 6.00 3.39%

Michael Hill NZD 0.68 NZD 0.67 NZD 0.01 1.49%

(pence unless noted)
Anglo American $13.00 $14.73 -$1.73 -11.74%
Archangel CAD 0.05 CAD 0.12 -CAD 0.07 -56.52%
Harry Winston CAD 7.00 CAD 7.25 -CAD 0.25 -3.45%
Mountain Province CAD 1.78 CAD 1.84 -CAD 0.06 -3.26%
Peregrine Diamonds CAD 0.59 CAD 0.56 CAD 0.03 5.36%
Rockwell Diamonds CAD 0.07 CAD 0.09 -CAD 0.03 -27.78%
Shore Gold CAD 0.55 CAD 0.58 -CAD 0.03 -5.17%
Stornoway Diamond CAD 0.16 CAD 0.15 CAD 0.01 3.33%
True North Gems CAD 0.14 CAD 0.12 CAD 0.02 16.67%
UK (pence)
African Diamonds 24.3 24.2 0.1 0.21%
BHP Billiton 1,378.0 1,517.0 -139.0 -9.16%
Firestone Diamonds 36.6 43.2 -6.6 -15.28%
Gem Diamonds 168.3 175.0 -6.8 -3.86%
Gemfields 7.0 6.3 0.7 11.11%
Mano River 4.0 4.0 0.0 -0.74%
Mwana Africa 8.4 5.9 2.4 40.57%
Namakwa Diamonds 41.7 45.5 -3.8 -8.40%
Petra Diamonds 38.0 41.0 -3.0 -7.22%
Rio Tinto plc 2,055.8 3,157.0 -1,101.2 -34.88%
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