Diamonds still high on US buyers’ list, says De Beers
American buyers still put a premium on classic diamond jewellery pieces as they increasingly gravitate towards more significant purchases and investment items, De Beers Group’s latest survey revealed.
Results of De Beers’ sixth Diamond Insight ‘Flash’ Report showed that despite a challenging 2020, demand for diamond jewellery remained strong throughout the fourth quarter of the year, outpacing other luxury categories and apparel, as buyers favoured purchases with emotional meaning and enduring value.
A research undertaken by De Beers in March 2021 also showed the desire for quality and lasting value is expected to continue, with 88 per cent of US consumers surveyed saying it is better to invest in fewer but better things than in items that are fashionable but may not last.
“Looking forward to the rest of 2021, 43 per cent of US consumers said they were more likely to make a significant purchase in 2021 than last year,” the company said. “The March survey also confirmed that the mindset of the majority of Americans remains firmly rooted in quality over quantity for now.”
Attitudes to lab-grown diamonds are likewise evolving, continued De Beers. The Diamond Insight Report provided insights from the latest round of De Beers Group’s bi-annual lab-grown diamond (LGD) tracker via 360 Market Reach, with a national panel of 5,000 respondents.
The study found increasing awareness of LGDs among US consumers (with about two-thirds of fine jewellery consumers aware of the concept), allied to a growing perception that LGDs occupy a distinct position in the category as new, modern, fun, and appealing for impulse or self-purchase.
The research showed that consumers differentiate natural diamonds from LGDs by attributing to them the key category territories of “authentic” (60 per cent vs. 6 per cent for LGD); “romantic” (41 per cent vs. 6 per cent for LGD); and “would make me feel special” (37 per cent vs. 3 per cent for LGD).
The top US consumer concerns regarding LGDs remained that they were not as rare as natural diamonds and will not retain their value over time, with seven out of 10 consumers stating that they would not pay more than US$1,000 for a piece of LGD jewellery.