Despite predictions of a price pullback, the gem market appears to have stabilized
The colored gemstone market is stable. Dealers are cautiously adding inventory in anticipation of increasing demand during the second half of the year. Key gem varieties continue to enjoy strong prices in defiance of a predicted price pullback. Sapphire continues to dominate demand in the global market. Sapphminco, a subsidiary of Hong Kong–based Sino Resources Mining Corporation, is reporting that a major deposit of sapphire was found in late April in the Ankeniheny-Zahamena area of Madagascar. The deposit is reported to be potentially one of the largest in the island nation’s history and is generating excitement in the global market. Gem sapphire finds in Madagascar in the 1990s proved to be some of the most important in decades.
Other gems generating interest heading into the JCK Las Vegas show include spinel, especially in the pastel colors; red tourmaline; aquamarine; most of the garnet group; and opal. Also, dealers have particularly high expectations regarding demand for phenomenal gems. Consumers are more aware of color change gems and gems that exhibit a color shift as a result of marketing by major retailers.