Diamond Shavings: Your Friday Web Roundup

Sorry to lead off with so much gloomy news, but … well …

 

Holiday 2007 Results: Superbad.

Signet: US comp sales down 8.1%, worldwide comps down 6.8%.

[Heard conference call: Journey, larger diamonds did well, Circle, three-stone weak. Jared did better than mall stores. “Marco” environment blamed.  Company may list in U.S.]

Zale: Comp sales down 9%.

Finlay: Comp sales down 5.9%   Credit rating cut.

Tiffany: US comp sales down 2%, worldwide comps up 1%.  Transcript.

Birks and Mayors: US comp sales down 10%, Canadian comps down 5%.

– Jewelry weak at Target, Costco, JC Penney, strong at Saks, Neiman Marcus.

– Reuters: Jewelry sales lackluster.

 

Holiday 2007 Aftermath: There Will Be Blood.

– Majors slash jewelry prices.
Jewelry and retail stocks fall.

– Derco creditor list. (Second item.)

– Indian company goes under.

– Alpha Omega’s inventory’s missing.

 

If all that wasn’t depressing enough ….

NY Post predicts “miserable” 2008 for retail.

– The U.S. may be in, or heading towards, a recession. Happy New Year! 

 

Breeden increases Zale stake again!

– Analysis from Ken Gassman and GLG Group.

NY Post: Breeden wants “proxy fight.”

My thoughts. 

 

DTC raises prices 3.5%.
– Gold prices top $900.

 

Who’s Down With BPP?

– Six sightholders suspended for BPP violations: polishedprices, Idex, Rapaport.

Chaim: More, please!  Wyndham: “Hypocrisy.”

My thoughts (second item.)

 

“Blood diamond” testimony begins Charles Taylor trial. (With interview.)

 

Former De Beers director/Debswana MD charged with corruption.

– Debswana investigated?

– Botswana’s success shows “strains.”

 

Gitanjali acquires Nakshatra, Brightest Circle Jewelry.

 

Do Zimbabwe diamonds fund terrorism?

 

Jewelry Television closes Shop at Home.

 

Will industry ditch the dollar?

 

Canadian diamond find sparks “frenzy.”

– South African “diamond rush.”

 

Sierra Leone diamond exports rise.

 

Heist at Macau fair.

 

Hope Diamond’s red glow explained.

 

It’s a very very very fine house: Leviev’s new digs.

Photos: Gold-plated hot tub! $100k fireplace! Near Ringo and the Bee Gees!

 

Media Watch:

Good story on ice.com

TheStreet.com (video) on gold “scams.”

The AP on gold prices (includes visit to 47th Street.)

Smartmoney on Blue Nile’s stock.

Sfist: Is Mayor’s ring “blood diamond”?  Or: Why it must be annoying to be the Mayor of San Francisco.

From the Blog:
The Sightholder Saga Continues
In the Spotlight: Zale, Derco
Conflict Diamonds Again in the News

 

Have a nice 24-Karat weekend …. Perhaps I’ll see some of you during it  …

JCK News Director