Diamond prices are falling: producers grappling with too much supply

Diamonds have lost some of their luster, with over supply and the rise of synthetics placing pressure on prices. Is a turning point around the corner?

The value of investments can fall as well as rise, and you may get back less than you invested. Past performance is no guarantee of future results

The diamond market is under pressure. From the peak in 2014, the Overall Rough Diamond Index has lost around a quarter of its value. Momentum has been on the downside in the shorter term as well, with the index falling by around 7% since the highs last October.

In an interview with IGTV, Stuart Brown, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at Mountain Province said, ‘over the last five years we’ve probably seen too much supply of rough going into the market’. In terms of the market outlook he said, ‘we see it as being more positive but we’ve got some challenges right now’.

The diamond market has been grappling with an oversupply problem. According to a report from Bain, ‘2017 was the pinnacle production level for the natural diamond supply. From here on, output is expected to remain stable at best. Miners’ plans and actual production volumes in the first half of 2018 suggest production may even decline in the near future. Bain adds, ‘we expect natural rough diamond supply to change at an average annual rate of negative 1% to 1% in volume terms through 2030’.

Mountain Province’s CEO, Stuart Brown told IGTV, ‘new producers have come online. Existing producers have produced more and then there have bene some shocks to the industry’.

However, Brown said that demand has remained resilient. ‘We haven’t seen a decline in the global spend in certain sectors, but we are having to fight harder for our share of that wallet’. He said synthetic diamonds are the ‘new challenge to the industry’. However, his view is that ‘there is a place for both products’.

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