Commodities & Metals

Rapaport Brings Auctions to the Diamond Market

Diamonds come in many shapes and sizes, and to add to the mix in valuations they come in various color grades and have grades based upon how perfect the diamond is by inclusions.  Valuing diamonds has been a task that has often lacked transparency to the public, but a top source for more than a generation has been The Rapaport Group.  Rapaport has been on a quest to make the valuation and pricing more clear and there is the RapNet Diamond Trading Network and a RapNet TradeScreen for members.  The group has now undertaken setting up an auction website for GIA graded diamonds.

The platform creates a global marketplace with a direct link between diamond cutters in the manufacturing centers and diamond buyers worldwide via a transparent, liquid, cash market designed to attract investors.  This also unlocks an opportunity for consumers to obtain fair market value for the diamonds they wish to sell.

Martin Rapaport has fought for more diamond market transparency.  As you can imagine, not all market participants in the diamond business want such clarity.   The market lists GIA graded, Excellent to Very Good cut, Round, 0.50 to 10.00 ct., D-K, IF-VS2.

I got a chance to speak with Martin Rapaport back in 2008 for a brief telephone interview about a diamond exchange movement that started in the 1970s and 80s.  He noted how falling prices got in the way, and he also noted that industry heavyweights were able to keep that proposition from materializing. He also noted to me in 2008 that the virtual world set the stage for a market to exist without buyers and sellers having to physically see a diamond to buy or sell one.

A diamond exchange or a diamond auction can and may bring in more investors on top of consumers, cutters, and retailers.  That can in turn bring about new market metrics and could create a situation where diamond prices crash or soar.  That is the free market.

If any organization can pull this off, it is Rapaport.  The Rapaport Group has been around since 1978 and is the leading source for industry pricing and market information.  It is an international network of companies supporting the development of free, fair and competitive global diamond markets. The fine quality GIA graded diamond auctions will occur www. rapaport.com/certauction.

JON C. OGG