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Diamond & Specialty Minerals Summary for June 21, 2024

2024-06-23 17:22 ET - Market Summary

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by Will Purcell

The diamond and specialty minerals stocks box score on Friday was a dour 65-97-148 as the TSX Venture Exchange lost one point to 570. Weak rough diamond prices continue to depress market prices for Canadian diamond companies. Dermot Desmond and Mark Wall's Mountain Province Diamonds Inc. (MPVD) traded above $7 in 2016 but today it lost one-half cent to 18.5 cents on 545,000 shares despite its Gahcho Kue mine continuing to generate cash.

Well, the data are as depressing as ever, but at least the information is arriving on time. For the fourth successive week, Paul Zimnisky's global rough diamond price index saw modest adjustments at most to accommodate tardy information. On several occasions this past year, Mr. Zimnisky's chart experienced downward slumps on a par with a magnitude nine earthquake -- what was left after the rumbling subsided looked nothing like a day before.

Unfortunately, that was the extent of the good news, as this week's data arrived wearing a scowl. Mr. Zimnisky's index dropped 0.8 point to 143.3, a 0.5-per-cent decline over last week. This puts the index down 30.9 per cent -- some 64 points -- below its all-time high of 207.3 points set in mid-February of 2022. The index began life at the start of 2008 at 100 points, so rough diamond prices have zigzagged their way through the Great Recession and COVID-19 collapses and their subsequent overexuberant rebounds, gaining an average of about 2.2 per cent per year -- roughly matching the average inflation rate over that time.

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