Prices of fancy coloured diamonds show signs of stabilising

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UK jewellers who like to keep a keen eye on global fancy colour diamond trends will be encouraged by news that prices are showing stability.

Following a better-than-expected holiday sales season in the US and continued sluggish demand in Asia, overall prices of fancy coloured diamonds grew 0.3% on average during the fourth quarter of 2015.

The strongest performance was in the fancy yellow diamond segment, growing by 1.1%, figures from the Fancy Color Diamond Index show. It tracks pricing trends for yellow, pink and blue fancy colour diamonds in three key global trading centres: Hong Kong, New York and Tel Aviv.

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Among fancy yellow size categories, 3ct and 5ct demonstrated 2.7% and 4.4% price increases, respectively, likely driven by low availability in rough diamond tenders. Over the same period, white diamonds rebounded to show price increases in December, fuelled by supply shortages.

In Q4 the strongest non-yellow performers were 1ct and 1.5ct fancy vivid blues and pinks, witnessing price increases of 4.4% and 3.7%, respectively.

Overall, the fancy blue category logged small price declines, after demonstrating significant price increases in the last two calendar quarters.

The market is showing clear preferences towards fancy intense and fancy vivid, at the expense of the lighter colour fancy category, which registered softened demand, the FCDI said.

On a year-on-year basis, when compared to Q4 2014, the index was practically flat, with blue fancy colour up 1.7%, pink fancy colour up 0.5% and yellow fancy colour diamonds down 1.8%.

Across all colour segments, fancy intense and fancy vivid demonstrated robust price increases, which were partly offset by price declines of colour diamonds in the fancy category.

The index is published by the non-profit Fancy Color Research Foundation (FCRF) and advisory board member, Jim Pounds, said: “Mining companies have effectively shut down a considerable portion of their rough diamond production, especially in Africa, around mid-2015, resulting in market shortages across colour and size categories, as reflected in the index results.”

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