De Beers’ sales dip

Heart of the economy: Jwaneng Mine is the world's most valuable diamond mine PIC: MORERI SEJAKGOMO
Heart of the economy: Jwaneng Mine is the world's most valuable diamond mine PIC: MORERI SEJAKGOMO

De Beers’ sales in the group’s latest auction of the year, came in at a provisional $370 million, more than 42% down year-on-year and reflecting the challenging period rough diamonds are enduring. By comparison, sales at the previous auction, the sixth of the year, were measured at $411 million.

Group CEO, Al Cook said the prevailing economic environment was leading to softer end-client demand for diamond jewellery in key consumer markets. He added that the summer period (in the US) was associated with traditionally lower levels of midstream trading, while sightholders continued to take a prudent approach to their purchasing.

The diamond giant has noted headwinds in sales of rough this year, as global economic uncertainties have resulted in high inventories in the midstream, which built up from the historically high sales recorded last year.

De Beers’ sales and prices for the first six months of this year were 23% down, while government has also warned that the trend is expected to impact both growth and the national budget.

De Beers, government and other natural diamond producers are hoping demand will perk up between Thanksgiving in the US and the Chinese New Year, helping to both reduce inventories in the midstream and boost jewellery sales.

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