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Diamond Prices: Comparison, Statistics, Education

By  , Thursday, July 12, 2012


Price Chart GraphicDiamond prices are determined largely by supply and demand with some interesting additional forces at play. Diamonds are a global commodity with commercially viable mining sources ranging from South America to Africa and from Siberia to Canada. Australia is now a major producer as well. Gem diamonds are in demand in developed countries worldwide. Until fairly recently the supply of diamonds to the market was primarily under control of one company, DeBeers. The same company was also the biggest promoter of diamonds to the public. This led to a somewhat monopolistic and artificial market. DeBeers could release and withhold diamonds on the market and thereby steer diamond prices.

 

 

 

Today, more mines have opened up outside the control of DeBeers and the marketplace has become more organic with competition determining diamond price to a greater extent than ever before. Still, there are relatively few diamond mines and mining entities and their interests are closely aligned. Therefore, prices are still not determined entirely by supply and demand factors. It is not necessarily in any company’s interest to lower prices significantly. Rather, a mining company which owns a resource with the potential to extract a large quantity of diamonds from the ground may instead elect to slow down production when the market is not strong and ramp up production when diamond price is high.

 

Another interesting factor that is very much in play in moving the diamond market is the wholesale pricing guide that has been adopted by diamond dealers all over the world. The diamond price statistics that it contains are presumably derived from research of actual asking prices at the wholesale level. A diamond price chart is published on a weekly basis and manufacturers, dealers and jewelers all over the world use this information to guide their buying practices and their selling prices. When “the list” changes, diamond prices all over the world are immediately affected. Because of the power of one company to impact global markets with this publication, many believe that it creates artificial valuation in certain cases. For instance, some diamond manufacturers are not able to profitably cut certain shapes, sizes and qualities because they cannot be traded profitably as a result of low list prices. Instead they turn production to areas where the list is higher. In this way the compilation of these diamond price statistics actually impacts not only trading prices, but supply as well.

 

  IF

VVS1

VVS2

 VS1

VS2

SI1

D

23,847

 16,158

 13,864

11,283

9,404

  6,668

E

15,390

13,783

 11,177

9,578

8,157

6,233

F

13,433

11,445 

9,662

9,155

7,548

6,190

G

10,819

9,739

9,154

7,654

7,008

5,875

H

9,217 

8,661

7,649

6,953

 6,297

 5,422

I

7,276

 6,973

 6,371

 5,834

 5,329

4,879

J

6,179

5,793

5,492

5,022

4,713

4,165

 Diamond Price Chart Sample

 

No matter how diamond prices are established it is much easier today for consumers to acquire diamond price education. There is a very competitive market for diamond sales to the end user, with thousands of companies vying for a piece of the market. Many of these companies post diamonds for sale online enabling quick diamond price comparison. Because many companies today are harnessing information technologies reducing their overhead, many of these diamonds are posted at prices fractionally above wholesale. By conveniently shopping around online, consumers can develop a very good sense of competitive value.

 

Astute shoppers who spend some time doing diamond price comparison online can find certain areas where their purchasing power can be maximized. To some extent these areas of opportunity are created by the aforementioned pricing publications. For instance, princess cut diamonds can be purchased today for prices well below those of round diamonds of the same size and quality. While there are certain factors that tend to make the manufacture of princess cuts somewhat less expensive than rounds, the price differential on the market far outstrips the differential in production cost. Consumers that are able to take advantage of this aberration are very happy they invested in diamond price education!

 

A word of caution when reviewing diamond prices online: Cut quality makes a huge difference in the value and beauty of diamonds. To get an accurate feel for the differences in value it is helpful to compare like size and quality in certified ideal cut diamonds.

 

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