De Beers Sales Rise Following Price Increase
De Beers’ sales momentum continued in July as demand strengthened and rough prices grew.
Proceeds came to $510 million for the month, compared with $116 million a year earlier, the company reported Wednesday. The total was 7% more than in June and the highest since February.
“Our sixth sales cycle of the year has seen the continuation of good demand for rough diamonds, driven by strong demand for diamond jewelry in the key US and China consumer markets,” said De Beers CEO Bruce Cleaver. “With the ongoing strength in consumer sales of diamond jewelry, the outlook remains positive for the second half of the year, subject to the risks that the pandemic continues to present across the globe.”
The year-on-year increase reflected the diamond market’s rebound from last year’s pandemic-induced slump. Polished demand has surged at the retail and trade levels since late 2020, while rough has been in short supply in recent months because of production limitations at the major mining companies. De Beers increased prices at the July sight by 4% to 5% — and more in some large categories — in response to this situation.
The sales value includes the latest sight, which ran from July 12 to 16, though trading continued beyond those scheduled dates as the miner is following a more flexible approach amid restrictions on travel and shipping. The total also includes the miner’s rough auctions.
De Beers’ rough sales almost tripled year on year to $3.04 billion during the first six sights of 2021 — from January through July — compared with $1.09 billion for the same period a year earlier, according to Rapaport calculations based on the miner’s results statements. The company holds 10 sights each year.
Parent company Anglo American is due to publish its full first-half results for De Beers and its other businesses on Thursday.