July 7, 2015, New York … Diamond prices continued to soften in June with many categories trading at deep discounts to the Rapaport Price List. Markets were relatively quiet as U.S. demand after the JCK Las Vegas show was weaker than in previous years, and Far East demand remains cautious. Diamond manufacturers are under pressure and continue to lose money on their rough supply.

The RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI™) for 1-carat laboratory-graded diamonds fell 0.9 percent during June. RAPI for 0.30-carat diamonds declined 2.5 percent and RAPI for 0.50-carat diamonds dropped 2.6 percent. RAPI for 3-carat diamonds decreased 1.7 percent.

RAPI for 1-carat diamonds fell 1.6 percent during the second quarter of 2015 and on July 1, 2015 was down 15.3 percent from a year earlier.

RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI™)

2Q 2015

1H 2015

(Changes at July 1)
RAPI 0.3 ct. -2.5% -6.2% -10.6% -25.8%
RAPI 0.5 ct. -2.6% -5.8% -9.3% -17.5%
RAPI 1.0 ct. -0.9% -1.6% -0.3% -15.3%
RAPI 3.0 ct. -1.7% -4.6% -6.2% -18.1%

Copyright © by Martin Rapaport

According to the Rapaport Monthly Report – July 2015, “Summer Heat Brings Price Pressure,” the June Hong Kong show met the low expectations of the trade and sales reflected a cautious Far East market and weak dealer sentiment. Manufacturers’ profit margins are being squeezed between stable rough diamond prices and declining polished. There is a shortage of fine-quality diamonds and selective
buyers are paying firm prices for these goods to fill existing orders.

However, there is a lot of excess inventory of lower-quality diamonds in the market and flexible inventory buyers are getting good deals.

Rough producers prefer to reduce supply rather than prices in the current weak market. Rough prices remained relatively stable in the second quarter after slipping an average 5 percent to 7 percent in the first three months of the year. De Beers rough sales fell by approximately 28 percent year on year to $2.5 billion in the first half of 2015, according to Rapaport estimates.

Manufacturers are expected to further reduce their rough purchases in the coming months in an effort to shrink existing inventory and raise liquidity levels.

The Rapaport Group has today issued an important statement regarding Rapaport Diamond Specifications, the Rapaport Price List and current market conditions. For additional information see this statement.