ALROSA’s Q1 2019 Sales of Rough Diamonds Up 19% Q-o-Q, But Down 37% Y-o-Y
Announcing its operating results for Q1 2019, ALROSA reported a diamond production of 7.8 million carats for the period. This marked an increase of 5% y-o-y.
The average diamond grade achieved for Q1 2019 was 1.23 cpt (down 5% y-o-y) on the back of higher share of lower-grade ore processing.
ALROSA sold 10.6 million carats (up 18% q-o-q) of rough diamonds in the period for a total value of US$988 million.Total sales in value terms grew 19% q-o-q; but were lower by 37% y-o-y.
In Q1 2019, polished diamond salesamounted to US$16.4 million (down 23% q-o-q and 31% y-o-y).
Of the rough diamonds sold, 7.9 million carats were of gem-quality diamonds (up 50% q-o-q). This was due to cutters “restocking their supplies of small- and medium-size diamonds”, the Company said.
The average realised prices for gem-quality diamonds fell to US$123/ct, lower by 19% q-o-q and 20% y-o-y. This was “due to a larger share of small-size diamonds in total sales and lower prices mostly for medium-size diamonds,” the Company noted.
ALROSA’s diamond inventories as at the end of Q1 2019 went down by 16% q-o-q (up 16% y-o-y) to 14 millioncarats.In Q1 2019, ALROSA said, the diamond price index was down by 3.1% q-o-q.
Providing a market overview for both rough and polished diamonds, ALROSA said: “In Q1 2019, the diamond market performed weaker than usual for that part of the year due to lower jewellery sales during the Christmas season. All the key consumption markets for diamond jewellery saw mixed performance in Q1 2019.”
The Company also noted that India’s cutting and polishing industry experienced “temporary liquidity problems after local banks toughened loan security and repayment terms”.
However, as dealers and retailers were restocking their supplies after the holiday season, demand for small- and medium-size rough diamonds gradually revived throughout Q1 2019.