Diamonds are a complex global market segment that is affected by many independent factors. Knowing which diamond statistics are relevant to the market and how they interact is essential to forming a clear understanding of diamond market trends.
Rough Diamond Production
The first diamond statistics to consider are those concerning rough diamond production. These statistics measure the overall production from diamond mines around the world. There were 139 million carats of rough diamonds produced in 2019, and production has remained relatively constant for years. Major producers of rough diamonds include Russia, Canada, and Australia.
It’s important to note that rough diamond production includes both diamonds suitable to be cut for jewelry and those that will be used in industrial applications like drilling and cutting tools. Because of these industrial uses and many other factors, rough diamond prices display trends independently of those found in jewelry.
Cutting and Polishing
Cut and polished diamonds are sold for use in a variety of jewelry applications. Trends in cutting and polishing are impacted by both rough diamond prices and the demand from retail jewelry sales. This industry is overwhelmingly controlled by India, which imports 90% of rough diamonds to be cut and polished, amounting to approximately $13 billion annually.
The margins for these midstream operations typically range between a loss of 1% and a gain of 3%. While these rates generally remain stable, there is concern over debt accumulation within this segment of the diamond industry. This is one area that could impact retail diamond jewelry prices.
Retail Sales Diamond Statistics
Diamond statistics show that diamond jewelry sales make up a significant minority of total jewelry sales around the world. Diamond jewelry represents approximately a quarter of total jewelry sales, dominating the luxury jewelry category and making up a substantial portion of premium jewelry sales.
Diamond jewelry has been trending upwards for years and is already recovering following a slight bump due to the pandemic. The US represents the largest segment of the retail diamond market. The diamond statistics concerning retail sales are the result of many complex causes, including both jewelry market trends and factors affecting rough diamond production and cutting and polishing.