London–Rough diamond sales picked up a bit for De Beers in its most recent round of sales but still remain off from what they were at this time last year.
The diamond miner and marketer said in its third sales cycle of the year, rough diamond sales totaled $580 million (provisional). That figure includes both global sightholder and auction sales.
That’s down 13 percent from $666 million in the third sales cycle of 2016 but up 5 percent from the second sales cycle of 2017, when sales totaled $553 million.
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De Beers CEO Bruce Cleaver characterized rough demand as “good” across all categories in cycle three coming off a strong show in Hong Kong.
However, the sales totals for the second and third sales cycles of the year remain well below what De Beers recorded at the beginning of the year and are off year-over-year as well.
The company saw demand spike at the start of the year, with rough diamond sales totaling $729 million, a 34 percent increase when compared with the first sales cycle of 2016.
In the second cycle, sales totaled $553 million (revised upward from the provisional figure of $545 million), down 10 percent from the second cycle of 2016.
In the third cycle, sales increased to $580 million, but that’s still 13 percent below the third cycle 2016.
Here’s a chart tracking De Beers’ rough diamond sales since January 2016, when the company began making the information publicly available. The most recent figure given is provisional, though the actual figures don’t tend to vary greatly from the provisional.
First sales cycle