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Diamond & Specialty Minerals Summary for Jan. 14, 2022

2022-01-14 19:41 ET - Market Summary

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by Will Purcell

The diamond and specialty minerals stocks box score on Friday was a ho-hum 84-95-121 as the TSX Venture Exchange lost four points to 902. Followers of rough diamond prices have heard this before -- duped more than once in the past five months -- but Paul Zimnisky's global rough diamond price index is again showing a peak that potentially ends the relentless, nearly 50-per-cent increase since the COVID-19-induced panic of early spring, 2020.

Prices dropped 0.4 per cent last week, says Mr. Zimnisky, although the diligent, New York-based diamond analyst regularly tweaks his index to accommodate late-arriving data covering the past few months. Those tweaks subsequently erased an August high, one that now appears as just a pothole on the path skyward, while a series of false peaks in the fall disappeared entirely. The latest dip may be just another mirage, as manufacturers will presumably be restocking after the holiday rush.

Either way, diamond miners have plenty to cheer with the surge in rough prices. Still, those that banked on demand outstripping supply sufficiently to have prices relentlessly beat inflation have been disappointed since the hope became prevalent in the late 2000s. Mr. Zimnisky's index shows prices are up just 9.3 per cent in the past 10 years and are roughly even with the peak that followed the 18-month run that came on the heels of the Great Recession.

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