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The Sparkle Rundown

pie chartAmerica’s Diamond & Jewelry Ranking

WP Diamonds, a leading online buyer and partner for retailer buy-back of diamonds, jewelry and watches, has announced the launch of America’s Diamond and Jewelry Ranking. The company’s last 15,000 consumer inquiries and data have informed these findings, covering all 50 states.

America’s Diamond and Jewelry Ranking is the first report of its kind that directly analyzes ownership across the United States.

The Big One that didn’t get away

diana jarrett carat photoWhat a difference a day makes. Economic reports by the end of October 2015 lamented the demise of the diamond mining boom in Botswana. “The honeymoon is over in Botswana, where the diamond industry that led the world has fallen on hard times,” cried Bloomberg reporter Mike Cohen in The Nerve Africa, a news platform covering Africa’s economic climate. In the case of Botswana, ‘diamonds aren’t forever’ was the gist of that gloomy report.

Could more acidic oceans mean less pearls?

Increasingly acidic sea conditions have been shown to weaken the shells of pearl oysters—but it appears these mollusks are pretty resilient creatures.

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AsianScientist (Jan. 29, 2016) - Pearls have adorned the necklines of women throughout history, but some evidence suggests that the gems’ future could be uncertain. Increasingly acidic seawater causes oyster shells to weaken, which doesn’t bode well for the pearls forming within.

However, as scientists report in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, the mollusks might be more resilient to changing conditions than previously thought.

Pearl aquaculture is a thriving business, particularly in Asia and Australia. In Western Australia alone, the total allowable annual catch of oysters per licensed pearl production company is 572,000 oysters, or approximately US$200 million dollars’ worth of pearls.

World's top 10 rookie gold mines

These high-grade mines will soon start competing with gold mining's industry leaders

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The gold market is not a traditional mineral commodity market where one is able, under certain assumptions and limitations, to analyze supply/demand relationships and to make reasonable forecasts regarding future prices and absorption rates for a selected metal. While fundamentals play a role gold is most often valued in terms of an investment instrument or other intangibles including its attraction as a “safe haven”, especially at times of global economic upheaval.

Primary gold producers, mining companies, add just a couple of percent of gold to the overall accumulated gold inventory annually, and thus can barely predict, not to say control or influence gold prices.

In the light of highly volatile gold market, established and soon-to-be miners have to have superb assets and, what is equally essential, excellent understanding of industry and “guts”, to make a final investment decision and to commission construction of new mines.

Rapaport reports polished diamond prices rise in January

Shortages Spur Increases in RAPI for 0.30-0.50ct. Diamonds

(NEW YORK) - Polished diamond prices rose in January as shortages continue to support the market. U.S. demand is steady after a reasonably good holiday season, while China’s wholesale market slowed as the focus shifted to retail for the Chinese New Year Spring Festival starting on February 8.

The RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI™) for 1-carat, GIA-graded diamonds rose 0.9 percent in January. RAPI for 0.30-carat diamonds advanced 4.7 percent and RAPI for 0.50-carat diamonds grew 4.5 percent. RAPI for 3-carat diamonds fell 0.5 percent.

RAPI for 1-carat diamonds fell 4.4 percent from a year ago as manufacturers sought to reduce excess inventory in 2015.

Treasure hunter goes missing searching for gold stash

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Several years ago, a millionaire named Forrest Fenn sent the world on a treasure hunt when he stashed a chest filled with $2 million in gold somewhere in the Rockies. Tens of thousands of people have tried to find it. The latest hunter is a 54-year-old grandfather named Randy Bilyeu — and he’s been missing for three weeks.

Now, instead of searching for a treasure chest, Randy’s friends, family, and local police are desperately looking for him. Even the 85-year-old millionaire who started this whole quest is helping to comb the most remote regions of the upper Rio Grande for Bilyeu — and out of his mind with worry, according to The Associated Press.

Bilyeu left his home in Colorado in early January. He was last heard from on January 4 and was reported missing on January 14, The Albuquerque Journal reported. Family and friends said Randy set out on January 5 after scouting along the river for two weeks. He brought a raft, a wetsuit and waters, a GPS device, and his dog, Leo.

GIA extends Diamond Confirmation Service through March

GIAInvestigation continues; additional arrests made

(CARLSBAD, Calif.) - In response to concerns expressed by members of the trade, GIA has extended the submission date for the confirmation service announced on Nov. 25, 2015, by two months to March 31, 2016.

Anyone with a GIA grading report originally issued between November 2014 and October 2015 who is concerned about the validity of the report due to the unauthorized changes to grading reports uncovered in October 2015 may submit the original report and the referenced diamond to any GIA location for the confirmation service at no charge until the March 31 deadline for submissions.

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