Diamond Shavings: Your Friday Web Roundup

First off, no, this isn’t the shortest Diamond Shavings ever. The people who designed this blog tool now cut off our posts after a certain point on the main blog page. Click “read more” and you will see this post (and all the others for that matter) in its glorious entirety. I don’t know why they did that, but the blog Lords work in mysterious ways. 

Secondly, I may have been too optimistic about holiday sales last week. Check out the pretty downbeat reports below.

Also, as Monday is the big sightholder decision D-day, I will probably spend a lot of time on the 17th figuring out who is on or off the list. To make things easier, if you’re a sightholder, or anyone else with good info, feel free to email me: rbates – at- reedbusiness.com. Hopefully I can get something on here as the day develops.

Anyway, here is the news:

Holiday reports (Jewelry/luxury)
– Gassman/Idex: “Modest” holiday for majors.
– Also Gassman: Sterling has credit woes. Uh-oh.
– JCOC says Black Friday jewelry purchases down.
– Luxury customers more price conscious (Video.) 
– On the plus side, Overstock.com says diamond business is booming.

Holiday reports (general retail):
– NRF says overall holiday spending up 5.1%.
– CNN: mall traffic down, only “modest” increases from majors

Quote of the week
(from a diamond manufacturer): “We used to say it was Christmas in July. Now it’s July at Christmas.”

Forevermark available to non-sightholders.
– Commentary from Charles and Chaim.  

South Africa stops rough diamond exports.
Paper: Benificiation dispute with Diamond Manufacturing Botswana (Star Diamond.)

Christmas jewelry made in sweatshops? Oy.

Diamond investment fund to be launched after New Year’s.
Boston Herald: Diamonds are not a good investment. An Australian newspaper disagrees. 

Varda Shine: There will be blood. 
– Gareth Penny interview

Rio Tinto to BHP: OK, you had your fun. Now leave us alone.
– BHP mulls next step. May go hostile.
More speculation about diamond holdings in a merger.
Report that Blackstone will bid for Rio Tinto most likely bogus.

Jerusalem Post claims
EGL has new “absolute” synthetic detection method.
– Utah’s Desert News talks to local colored diamond “enhancement” company. Never heard of these people before. 

Journey jewelry has sold $1.5 billion.

Rob May to head Natural Colored Diamond Association.

Harry Winston 3Q: Sales up, but posts loss regardless.
– Canadian newspaper: Shows industry not “recession proof.” Well, duh. 

BIDZ may open up second site; will it merge with Blue Nile?
– Blue Nile customer service hailed.

My Helzberg post inspires raging debate

Alan Dershowitz shops at Leviev, despite — or more likely because of — protests. 
– Susan Sarandon teeters on the fence!

Arkansas park produces 1000th diamond – and millionth news story.

From the Blog:
DTC and Forevermark.
The New Helzberg Ad.
The Industry’s Newest PR Problem?

Have a great weekend …

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JCK News Director

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