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De Beers rakes in R6.8bn in diamond sales

May 16 2017 17:02
Lameez Omarjee, Fin24

Johannesburg - De Beers generated $520m (R6.8bn) in diamond sales for the fourth sales cycle of 2017.

The diamond producer, owned by Anglo American [JSE:AGL], released its rough diamond sales data on Tuesday.

The sales are down 11% from the previous cycle, where sales came to $586m (R7.6bn). Compared to the fourth cycle in 2016, where sales were $636m (R8.3bn), sales were down 18%.

However, chief executive Bruce Cleaver said there was a growing demand for rough diamonds.  “We are continuing to see steady demand for rough diamonds, despite the industry entering a typically quieter season.”

As De Beers prepares for a trade show in Las Vegas in June, Cleaver is optimistic about the company’s sales prospects. 

Sales for all four cycles of the year so far, came to $2.38bn (R31.21bn). 

READ: De Beers sells twice as many diamonds

Earlier in the year the diamond producer managed to clear out stockpiles from 2016. In April Bloomberg reported that the diamond producer sold twice as many diamonds as it did in the first quarter.

This came following India’s policy to tackle corruption by abolishing 500 rupee and 1000 rupee bank notes in 2016. This impacted De Beer’s diamond sales, particularly cheaper gems, which are often traded using cash transactions. The majority (90%) of the world’s rough diamonds pass through India to be cut, polished or traded, reported Bloomberg. 

Anglo American's share was trading at R183.89 (+0.61%) just before market close on the JSE.

Read Fin24's top stories trending on Twitter:

anglo american  |  de beers  |  diamond  |  mining


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