Gem Pricing Report: Hustle and Slow

Many buyers have been priced out of the market, meaning a correction may be in orderBoth diamond and colored stone dealers reported that sales in August slowed considerably from earlier in the summer. Increasing concerns about the direction of the U.S. economy and unease in Europe appear to have curbed many consumers’ appetite for spending on non-essentials. This has triggered a cautious response among retailers just as manufacturers have started gearing up for holiday orders.Currently, sales activity appears concentrated at opposite ends of the market, with both extra-fine-quality collector gems and the inexpensive commercial gems seeing demand. Calls for color at mid-level price points ($2,000–$4,500) are few and far between. A major challenge facing retailers is that prices for many fine-quality gems are simply outside the comfort zone of many middle-class consumers.At present, pr

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