The diamond industry has long walked a tightrope between wanting everyone to want diamonds and not quite letting everyone have those diamonds. This balancing act has been counterpointed by the availability of diamonds, the ease (or lack of such) in mining them, and the logistics of transporting the stones, cut or uncut across many international borders. With all this manipulation, both natural and artificial, what is happening to the value of diamonds right now? Let us take a look.
Big, Good Diamonds Always Win
The biggest good-quality natural diamonds are rare and always will be. These are very likely to retain their value over time, no matter what happens to the diamond industry in the future. If in any doubt, make sure that your diamond has certification from either AGS or GIA, the two main diamond certification companies in the USA. Both companies will minutely measure and assess a diamond, producing a certificate which can be verified online at any time to reassure you that the diamond you are holding is indeed the one detailed on the certificate. If you are not sure of what sort of price you should expect to be paying, check out the diamond price calculator at Pricescope, an independent and impartial site designed to help buyers make the best possible decision.
Small to Medium Scramble
The smaller and medium-sized commercial diamonds have long been the industry’s bread and butter, and as such, their prices readily rise and fall with availability and demand. Overall, the price of diamonds has tended to rise over the twenty years leading up to 2018, when prices still rose, but at a much-reduced rate.
This is partly due to political drama going on in the world at the time, when Hong Kong was gripped by unrest – Hong Kong is traditionally a huge consumer of diamonds, given the high numbers of very wealthy people who were living there, until the mainland China government began to flex its authoritarian muscles. Protests and crackdowns thereon made life a little too interesting for the super-wealthy who then left as quickly as they could – not spending the usual small fortunes in Hong Kong jewelers’ shops beforehand.
Leading on into 2019 and spilling in COVID-ridden 2020, this state of affairs might have seen the price of diamonds plummeting unstoppably, but this did not happen. Diamond traders tend to have a slight overstock of products at all times, which can even out any gaps in the supply chain, but the knowledge that several diamond producing mines were due to stop production over the two- or three-year period between 2018 and 2020 saw prices remaining high, as investors and traders bought up surplus stocks to mitigate the closures. The biggest mine to close will be Australia’s Argyle mine, a massive project responsible for what have been come to be known as the world’s best pink diamonds – they even take their name from the mine, which will dramatically impact on Australia’s overall annual production.
However, the growing taste for fluorescent diamonds – those that light up under black-lights – may be the savior of the industry, shifting the focus to Canada and Russia, where these highly fluorescent stones can be more readily found. Diamond prices may fall slightly given the odd year that 2020 has turned out to be. But our love of the precious stones is sure to stand the test of time, and diamonds are sure to retain their value over time.