The value of diamond miner De Beers' rough diamond sales, which include global sightholder sales and auctions, for the sixth and seventh sales cycles of this year, amounted to $116-million and $320-million, respectively.
CEO Bruce Cleaver says diamond markets showed some continued improvement throughout August and into September as Covid-19 restrictions continued to ease in various locations.
The improvement was also the result of manufacturers being focused on meeting retail demand for polished diamonds, particularly in certain product areas, he notes.
As a result of the restrictions on the movement of people and products in various jurisdictions around the world, De Beers has continued to implement a more flexible approach to rough diamond sales during the sixth and seventh sales cycles of the year, with the normal week-long sightholder events extended towards near-continuous sales.
As a result, the provisional rough diamond sales figure quoted for cycle seven represents the expected sales value for the period August 19 to September 10, and remains subject to adjustment based on final completed sales.
Cleaver says overall industry sentiment has become more positive as jewellers in the key US and Chinese consumer markets gained confidence ahead of the important year-end holiday season, supported by strong bridal diamond jewellery demand across markets.
“Accordingly, we saw a recovery in rough diamond demand in the seventh sales cycle of the year, reflecting these retail trends, following several months of minimal manufacturing activity and disrupted demand patterns in all major markets.
"It is clear that the recovery is at an early stage and we expect that it will take some time to get back to pre-Covid-19 levels of demand.”