Demand for blue diamonds increased substantially during 2016, while demand for yellows continued to fall. For the full year 2016, the Fancy Color Diamond Index rose by 0.4%, driven by price increases for blue and pink diamonds of 5.5% and 1.4%, respectively, and offset by a 4.0% decline in prices of yellow diamonds.

According to wholesale pricing data collected by the Fancy Color Research Foundation (FCRF), on average prices for fancy color diamonds remained unchanged in the Q4 2016. The overall trends were similar to the ones identified in the first three quarters. For more than 18 months, transactional data has pointed to two clear pricing trends: consistent demand-driven price increases for blue fancy color diamonds, partially offset by continued price declines in lower-cost, commercial yellow fancy color diamonds.

In the fourth quarter of 2016 prices of blue diamonds increased 1.5%, while pink diamond prices remained largely unchanged. Prices of yellow diamonds declined by 1.4%, more than during the third quarter of the year. Overall, prices in the fancy color diamond category were slightly down during Q4, while prices of white diamonds decreased significantly during the same period, as a result of the India liquidity crisis. According to RAPI™, 0.50 and 1.00 carat white diamonds declined by 4.8% and 3.0%, respectively, between October and December 2016.

Category Q4/16 vs. Q3/16 Q4/16 vs. Q4/15
All fancy color diamonds (0.2%) 0.4%
All fancy yellow diamonds (1.4%) (4.0%)
All fancy pink diamonds (0.2%) 1.4%
All fancy blue diamonds 1.5% 5.5%

The strongest price performers during Q4 2016 were the fancy vivid blue in the 10ct, 1ct and 2ct categories, appreciating by 5.6%, 4.8% and 4.3%, respectively. On the other side, price declines between 1-2% were identified across most yellow categories, including “fancy”, intense and vivid. Nevertheless, rare yellow diamonds (namely unique intense and vivid yellow) did not see price declines.

For a complete data analysis, please visit   www.fcresearch.org.

The Fancy Color Diamond Index is calculated based on live pricing inputs from a large sample of the world’s leading traders of fancy color diamonds in Asia, United States and the Middle East. The Index is published by the non-profit Fancy Color Research Foundation (FCRF), and tracks pricing data for yellow, pink and blue fancy color diamonds.

FCRF Advisory Board chairman Jim Pounds said, “Blue fancy color diamond prices are at their all-time peak due to a combination of very thin supply and a healthy demand. Overall, high quality, and well cut vivid blues and pinks do not exist in sufficient volume to create price stability”. He added: “Highly saturated yellow rough diamonds, especially vivids, have recently achieved high prices in tenders, likely representing improved demand that will impact prices.”