Mar 012014

The Pink StarSome diamonds get around.  You might be familiar with these diamond names if you follow big diamonds:

The Steinmetz Pink
The Pink Star
The Pink Dream

It is the same diamond!  With so many names, don’t you think the little pink guy might be confused?  The diamond is in a bit of a jam right now.  In November 2013 it was sold at Sotheby’s auction for a record setting $83,187,381 USD.   That’s 83 million for a 59.60ct diamond.  The buyer was Isaac Wolf.

Isaac Wolf had changed the name from The Pink Start to The Pink Dream after he bought it.  Problem is, he did not actually purchase the diamond – so has the name now been changed?

Isaac Wolf did not have the cash to pay for it.  Sotheby’s has had to suck up the cost and place the diamond in their inventory and write off the auction fee.  They currently are holding the diamond with a value of $72 million placed on it.  They are still going after the dead beat buyer but are considering other alternatives.

Personally I don’t know why they don’t just list it up for auction again, perhaps it is bad karma or something.

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Feb 132014

Looks like Gem Diamonds Limited (based in London) has pulled a couple more big rocks out of the ground at their Letšeng mine.


162.06ct Type II – Rough Diamond

On Feb. 13th, they sent out a press release about the two new stones.

They list the stones as two rough diamonds (a 162.06 carat type II diamond and a 161.74 carat type I diamond).  Companies don’t usually state any color/clarity of the diamonds at this point so you have to try and follow them through the market (often difficult to do) to get the details about them.

Both diamonds were recovered in largely undamaged condition and will be sold via tender later this month.

I will try and find keep track of the 162.06ct diamond, since it is a Type II it is possible that this diamond could be color treated.  Imaging if – by remote chance – it was a Type IIb and could be turned blue.  The three photos here are the Type II diamond, just from looking at the color it does not look like something that you would want to alter the color of – it looks quite white already and treating it would probably not increase the value but the potential is there due to it being Type II.

It was only a few month ago that the same mine produced a 12.47ct natural blue diamond.  The company announced the blue diamond on September 30th and it was sold via tender in Antwerp on October 11th for $4.8 million USD ($59,173 per carat).

162.06ct Type II – Rough Diamond

162.06ct Type II – Rough Diamond

162.06ct Type II – Rough Diamond

162.06ct Type II – Rough Diamond

Photos courtesy of Gem Diamonds Limited

Dec 212013

Yesterday I made a post about a diamond I saw while window shopping, a 12.01ct D IF diamond priced at 3.8 million USD.

14.69ct-D-Flawless-Diamond---GIA-Report-2155484852This morning I thought I would see what is available online, so I made a trip over to Blue Nile to use their search.  Turns out there is a much better deal at their website.  You can get a bigger diamond, higher clarity (flawless vs. internally flawless) for just about 1 million less!

Here are the specs of the diamond @ Blue Nile.

Carat: 14.69ct
Measurements: 15.68 x 15.81 x 9.83
Color: D
Clarity: Flawless
Cut: Excellent
Symmetry: Excellent
Polish: Excellent

If you want to make the payment via bank transfer, the price is only $2,885,770 – and the GIA report was issued on July 16, 2013 so you don’t have any concerns that the diamond may have been ‘previously enjoyed’ and the grade no longer holds.

I wonder what type of person actually buys stuff like this???  I’ve known a few rich people in my life but I’ve never met an end consumer who is in the market for diamonds like these…. lots of dreamers though.

The 14ct diamond for sale at Blue Nile is not owned by them, they are just the shopping cart.  The diamond is actually owned by a wholesaler out of New York.  Any wholesaler could buy the diamond direct, but Blue Nile gets incredibly good pricing so the difference is price is next to nothing.

Dec 102012

50.01 RadiantFor the vast majority of people I believe diamonds are not an investment.  If you buy an engagement ring you should not expect the resale value to exceed your purchase price for a long, long time.  If you have excess cash, try stocks, bonds or gold.

Are there exceptions?  Apparently so, lets take a look at a diamond that sold at auction today at Christie’s New York.

The diamond sold was a rectangular-cut diamond, weighing 50.01 carats with a GIA report stating the color as D and the clarity as VVS2 along with a work diagram indicating that the clarity may be internally flawless if recut.

The selling price was $8,370,500 (or about $167,000 per carat).  An expensive stone, no doubt.  But this is not the first time this diamond has been sold.

Back on April 12, 2005 the same diamond was sold at auction (also by Christies’s New York) for $4,216,000 ($84,000 per carat).  Back then it had a GIA report stating the diamond had flawless clarity, so someone must have been wearing it or using it and the diamond suffered a bit of damage since the sale in 2005.  Even with the damage the diamond increased in value by 99%, try finding another investment from 2005 through today with that type of return.

The GIA report number in 2005 was the same report number as the GIA issued again in 2012, so we know the diamond was submitted for a report update and not sent in for a new report.   Had it been sent in for a fresh report, the diamond would have obtained a new report number.

But wait, there is more to this story.  This diamond gets around.  This diamond was also sold on November 17, 1994 in Geneva for $2,545,000.    The value did not increase at such a quick rate as in the last decade but still from 1994 through 2005 the incredible diamond increased 66%.

Had you bought the diamond in 1994 and held it through 2012 you would be up 229%.

So who buys these diamonds?  Often if it is a private buyer they often remain anonymous, but for each of these sales the buyer was Laurence Graff of Graff Diamonds.

Nov 272012

Christies auctioned off a PAIR of 8.88ct D color, flawless clarity diamonds today.  They have the highest cut grade, symmetry & polish; all excellent – known as EX/EX/EX.

Both stones have GIA reports (and have their GIA report numbers inscribed), we obtained copies of both reports from the GIA grab a copy and drool 2135439789 & 5131447612.

Final auction price for the pair of incredible diamonds was $3,716,302 USD or $209,251 per carat.  Both diamonds are Type IIa, which often result in the most chemically pure diamond and why so many IF stones are Type IIa.

Nov 162012

Christie’s sells 76.02ct D IF Archduke Joseph for 22 million, or $280K/ct.  The diamond is a rare Type IIa diamond.  The buyer remains anonymous (I can help narrow down the search, the buyer is not me).

The Archduke diamond is believed to have come from India’s Golcanda mine, the home of many Type IIa diamonds.

The diamond was previously owned (and named after) Archduke Joseph August (1872–1962), a Hungarian prince of the Habsburg dynasty. Last sold at auction in 1993 the diamond at the time was ‘only’ $6.5 million. It was subsequently recut to improve its clarity and brilliance.  Back in the 1800’s they just did not have the cutting technology available to bring out the diamond’s full potential.

The GIA report for this diamond is number 5151001770 and was issued on September 14, 2012.  For some reason using the GIA report check the report is at this time not available.