Diamond Prices Up 6%

Polished diamond prices rose 6.6 percent in March, according
to a report released April 6 by Rapaport Research.

The average asking price of gems rose 6 percent on the
RapNet computer network in March, the company said. Half-caraters were up 7.3
percent, one-caraters up 7.7 percent, and three caraters up 6.9 percent. Prices
of small, inexpensive diamonds also rose.

The increase was driven by consumer demand in the Far East
and India, reinforced by strong dealer trading, the company added. Shortages
resulting from a lack of manufacturing meant buyers could offer little
resistance to higher prices.  

Rough is also rising, because of high spot tender prices and
a De Beers Diamond Trading Company price hike of about 10 percent. The company
noted that “there is rowing concern about speculation as rough inventories are
expanding while manufacturing lags.”

Additional information about the state of the diamond market
is in the just-released Rapaport Research Report, “March Madness,” available at
www.diamonds.net/report.

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