Rough diamond demand remained strong at De Beers June sight, as the mining giant provisionally sold $575 million of rough diamonds for the fifth sales cycle of 2018 (Global Sightholder Sales and Auction Sales), its second largest take in 2018. Earnings from this sale represent a 6% increase over the same cycle in 2017 and a 3% increase over the $560 million sold in its fifth cycle of 2016. Bruce Cleaver, CEO, De Beers Group, said: "Sentiment in the diamond industry’s midstream is positive following the JCK Las Vegas trade show at the start of the month, and we continued to see good demand for our rough diamonds across the product range."
Rough trader Dudu Harari writes for Bluedax, "Average premiums on rough in the secondary market jumped from 4.8% in May to 6.1% in June; the highest for the year-to-date. Overall," he adds, "despite a price increase, sightholders were satisfied with the assortments presented at the June Sight. Many said the boxes were an improvement on previous Sights, which also helped boost demand." De Beers reportedly raised prices approximately 1% at Sight 4. According to the Zimnisky Global Rough Diamond Index, rough diamond prices during the sales period were just slightly lower than their 52-week high. "For the moment," Harari adds, "there is good demand for polished with a relatively good supply of rough. In addition, polished stock levels in India are low; a combination helping to keep the market strong. Even the announcement of De Beers’ new lab-grown diamond venture, bank restrictions and credit cuts in India failed to cool the market."