What's A Diamond Worth?March 26, 20
Three weeks ago, I penned my first memo for IDEX. It was about coronavirus. The Louvre had closed in Paris, Twitter staff were working from home and we were all getting anxious. But the invisible virus hadn't yet turned our lives upside-down. We could still go to work as normal, visit a shopping mall, meet friends for coffee, go for a run â€¦
Life before lockdown now seems like a distant memory. A third of the world's population currently have their movements restricted to slow the spread of the disease. Where I live, that means, as of yesterday, I can't go more than 100 metres from my home without very good reason.
Thankfully there is still plenty of food - and toilet paper - in the supermarkets. And I'm paying no more this week for my groceries than I did last week, last month, or last December, when the first cases of coronavirus were confirmed.
All of which brings me to diamonds. The market determines the price I pay for my milk, bananas and Honey Nut Cheerios. But who decides the price of diamonds? In times of crisis will they go up, down or stay the same? As a journalist, my diamond purchases are limited (one engagement ring, one necklace - both stolen). But for those buying and selling on a daily basis knowing the true value of any given stone is critical.
So have prices plummeted in these uncertain times? Seemingly not. They fell by two per cent this month until trading ceased - a significant drop but not a drastic one.
How do I know? I'm looking at the IDEX Price Index. It's a figure derived from the asking prices of about 750,000 polished diamonds on its online trading platform. IDEX doesn't set the prices, the market does. IDEX reflects the activity of thousands of manufacturers, wholesalers and dealers from the world's major diamond trading centers. It's not a matter of opinion. There's no agenda. Its Price Index is unbiased, transparent and updated in real time.
More and more people in the industry are recognizing the benefits of objectively measuring a diamond's per-carat value, based on what's happening in the market, over any other method.
As a result, IDEX now has the majority of all certified diamonds globally on its online platform.
If I were planning any further diamond purchases (and it has been suggested that I might!) I'd ask my new friends in the industry for solid advice based on substantial evidence.
More and more companies are thinking the way I'm thinking, and signing up to the certainty of reliable prices in an uncertain world.
Have a fabulous weekend!