The price of polished diamonds fell in January despite a buoyant rough market, according to the latest RapNet Diamond Index from the Rapaport Group.
Rapaport said polished trading was cautious after a disappointed holiday sales period for jewellery in the US, while the rough market was driven by expectations that jewellers will replenish inventory sold during the festive period.
The price for 1-carat diamonds fell 0.9% in January and was down 6.8% from the same month a year ago. Meanwhile, the price of 0.50-carat and 3-carat diamonds fell 1.8% and 0.5%, respectively, on the previous month.
0.30-carat diamonds suffered the lowest decrease in price at 0.3% on December.
According to the report, polished supply is projected to rise in the first quarter following a spike in rough demand. Manufacturers ended last year with low inventory, having reduced production since Diwali, and are ramping up operations to satisfy an expected rise in polished trading.
De Beers sold $720m (£579m) worth of rough in January – its largest sight since July 2014 – according to Rapaport records, with average prices rising 2% to 3%.