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US Diamond Trade Declines in August

Polished imports slide 39%; exports fall 37%.
Oct 13, 2020 4:47 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... 
US polished-diamond imports dropped 39% year on year to $821 million in August, reflecting lower volumes and price per carat, according to data from the Commerce Department. The decline was gentler than the 50% drop the country recorded in July, but steeper than June’s 35% slowdown.

US Trade Data for August 2020
  August 2020 Year-on-year change
     
Polished imports $821M -39%
Polished exports $747M -37%
Net polished imports $74M -51%
Rough imports $20M 107%
Rough exports $9M -60%
Net rough imports $11M 2019: Deficit of $14M
Net diamond account $85M -39%
     
Polished imports: volume 585,820 carats -22%
Average price of polished imports $1,402/carat -21%
     
  January-August 2020 Year-on-year change
     
Polished imports $6.55B -53%
Polished exports $6.04B -52%
Net polished imports $503M -64%
Rough imports $101M -59%
Rough exports $118M -49%
Net rough imports -$17M 2019: Surplus of $16M
Net diamond account $487M -65%
     
Polished imports: volume 3.5 million carats -47%
Average price of polished imports $1,870/carat -12%


Source: US Commerce Department data; Rapaport archives.

About the data: The US, the world’s largest diamond retail market, is a net importer of polished. As such, net polished imports — representing polished imports minus polished exports — will usually be a positive number. Net rough imports — calculated as rough imports minus rough exports — will also generally be in surplus. The nation has no operational diamond mines but has a manufacturing sector, so normally ships more rough in than out. The net diamond account is total rough and polished imports minus total exports. It is the US’s diamond trade balance, and shows the added value the nation creates by importing — and ultimately consuming — diamonds.

Image: Times Square, New York. (Shutterstock)
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Tags: exports, imports, net diamond account, Rapaport News, trade data, US
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