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Diamond & Specialty Minerals Summary for May 15, 2023

2023-05-15 20:48 ET - Market Summary

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by Will Purcell

The diamond and specialty minerals stocks box score for Monday was a mediocre 72-104-134 as the TSX Venture Exchange fell two points to 615. Eira Thomas and Adam Lundin's Lucara Diamond Corp. (LUC) fell 3.5 cents to 51.5 cents on 13,000 shares in the wake of a ho-hum first quarter mining diamonds at its Karowe mine in Botswana. Inflation was up and revenue was down, but the company eked out a minuscule profit as a strong U.S. dollar offset inflation, reducing operating costs slightly from a year ago.

Unfortunately, revenue was down by a full third, as Lucara lamented a "softer diamond market for the company's larger, highest-value diamonds" compared to a year earlier, when rough diamond prices soared to an all-time high. Much of the decline in revenue occurred with Lucara's best diamonds, which it typically sells through an agreement with HB Antwerp. Lucara sold 2,971 carats through HB for $18-million (U.S.) in the quarter, averaging just over $6,000 (U.S.) per carat, compared with 2,870 carats for $33.5-million (U.S.) a year ago, or nearly 11,700 (U.S.) per carat.

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