Archive | Jewellery and Coins

Elite Diamond-Buying Club Shrinks as De Beers Culls Old Clients – by Thomas Biesheuvel (Bloomberg News – January 14, 2021)

https://www.msn.com/

(Bloomberg) — De Beers has cut off some of its long-term diamond buyers, marking one of the biggest shakeups in the way the miner sells gems since the end of its monopoly 20 years ago.

De Beers staff spent Wednesday calling its 80-odd handpicked customers, with some told they will be losing their seat at the industry’s top table, according to people familiar with the situation.

The world’s biggest diamond supplier has spent more than a year mulling the changes, which are designed to funnel more stones into fewer hands, said the people, who asked not to be identified as the talks were private. Continue Reading →

Lab-grown diamonds – a girl’s new best friend: The truth behind the ethical, affordable, identical(!) alternative to traditional diamonds – by Charlie Teather and Sheilla Mamona (Glamour Magazine – December 8, 2020)

https://www.glamourmagazine.co.uk/

They’re one of the few jewellery details that appeals to almost everyone. You can have a preference for daintier pieces or super chunky ones, lots of layers or simple singles, yellow gold, white, or even rose, but even the least traditional amongst us – whether we like to admit it or not – go a little weak at the knees for a truly mega diamond.

Asscher cuts, brilliant rounds, ovals… carat weights, GIA grades, clarity, colour – you’re likely aware that there are seemingly a million different decisions to make when buying a diamond, but did you know that there’s actually a whole other decision that needs to be made before you even get to this level of specificity?

A decision that’s usually made for you without you even knowing it, all thanks to ‘tradition’. Because there’s more than one kind of ‘diamond’. We’re not talking about all the aforementioned aesthetic details, but rather the way in which the diamond is formed. Continue Reading →

Murder and New York’s Diamond District – by Victoria Gomelsky (New York Times – December 3, 2020)

https://www.nytimes.com/

Rob Bates did not set out to write a cozy mystery, a subgenre of crime fiction in which an amateur detective, typically a woman, solves a murder in a small town. But in “A Murder Is Forever,” a novel published in October by Camel Press, he wrote just that — except the small town is New York City’s diamond district.

The heroine, Mimi Rosen, is an unemployed journalist who makes ends meet by answering phones at her father’s diamond business on West 47th Street. When a dealer in the district’s tightknit community of Orthodox Jews is murdered, she is determined to bring the killer to justice.

As news director of JCK, a 151-year-old jewelry trade publication based in New York — where he works with me, the editor in chief — Mr. Bates is familiar with the district and its people. Continue Reading →

Concerned about gem authenticity? You can now trace your jewels back to the mine – by Charmian Leong (CMA Lifestyle – November 29, 2020)

https://cnalifestyle.channelnewsasia.com/

People have probably never been more conscious about the source of their diamonds than the year Blood Diamond hit theatres in 2006.

And while this increased awareness has since made ethics a consideration for many when buying a jewel, we still have a long way to go before every gemstone that ends up under a spotlight and in a glass case is guaranteed to be conflict-free.

The good news is that we’re speeding down the right track.

American jeweller Tiffany & Co announced last year that it would become the first global player to be fully transparent about the journey of its individually registered diamonds by 2020, and the brand really went and did it. Continue Reading →

Do You Know Where Your Watch’s Gold Came From? – by Victoria Gomelsky (New York Times – November 19, 2020)

https://www.nytimes.com/

A mechanical timepiece is powered by clean kinetic energy and can run, at least theoretically, forever and a day. To support that image of inherent sustainability, many Swiss watchmakers over the past decade have partnered with conservation groups, implemented energy-saving measures at their at their factories and, more recently, experimented with recycled materials for things like packaging and straps.

When it comes to the gold and gemstones used to make watches, however, the industry lags behind other sectors such as electronics in understanding and communicating how its materials are obtained and ensuring their extraction has not harmed people and the environment.

“We always compare the watch industry here in Switzerland to the textile industry 20 years ago,” said Dario Grünenfelder, a consultant to WWF Switzerland and lead author of the WWF Watch and Jewellery Report 2018. “They’re not really tackling the big issues: the raw materials that go into their products.” Continue Reading →

Lab-Grown Diamonds Are Forever. Aren’t They? – by Murray Clark (Esquire U.K. – November 13, 2020)

https://www.esquire.com/uk/

It can take millions of years to grow a diamond, and technology can now do it much quicker in a traceable, ethical way. But not everyone is convinced

“I like the idea of a process – of nature – creating this crystal; how it’s survived this journey from deep within the Earth under geological circumstances; how it makes it to the surface and have man realise the beauty of it.

This whole process has a certain amount of romance to it,” says Jim Vernon, founder and CEO of US jewellers RockHer. Indeed, the very business of romance is diamond-encrusted, and one prone to gushing: a beaming bride-to-be on the wall of every high street jewellers, rock-heavy hand dainty and willowy upon the shoulder of a strapping groom. Happiness, like a diamond, is forever!

And yet, for all the usual Splenda, Vernon isn’t at all saccharine. He speaks steadily and calmly over the phone, a hard-to-place deep American timbre hinting at real appreciation as opposed to pre-made talking points. Continue Reading →

[Diamonds/Kimberly Process] In conversation with Ian Smillie – by Marc Choyt (Jewellery Business – November 12, 2020)

https://www.jewellerybusiness.com/

Completely cleansing the global diamond industry of blood, corruption, and conflict is no easy feat, and few are more familiar with this challenge than Ian Smillie.

A founding participant in the creation of the Kimberley Process (KP), Smillie currently chairs the Diamond Development Initiative (DDI), a conflict-prevention initiative that brings together non-government organizations (NGOs), governments, and the private sector to help formalize and improve social and economic conditions in the artisanal diamond mining sector.

Jewellery Business contributor, Marc Choyt, recently spoke to Smillie as research for the upcoming article, ‘Where Black lives don’t matter to jewellers.’ Co-authored by Kyle Abram, the piece explores the complexity of race within the jewellery industry, as well as the history of the ethical jewellery movement and the ongoing mission to create a ‘fair trade’ diamond. Continue Reading →

‘Ultra-rare’ purple-pink diamond sells for a record $26.6M – by Oscar Holland (CNN Style – November 11, 2020)

https://www.cnn.com/

An “ultra-rare” purple-pink diamond sold for a record 24.4 million Swiss francs ($26.6 million) at an auction in Geneva on Wednesday evening. The 14.83-carat stone, dubbed “The Spirit of the Rose,” is now the most expensive purple-pink diamond ever to sell at auction, according to Sotheby’s.

The sale comes more than three years after the gem was uncovered from a mine in northeast Russia. Taking its name from the 1911 Russian ballet “Le Spectre de la rose,” it was cut from an even larger rough diamond unearthed by the mining company Alrosa in 2017.

Then weighing 27.85 carats, the initial find was believed to be the largest pink crystal ever discovered in the country. It took a year to cut and polish the oval-shaped stone, which went on display in Hong Kong, Singapore and Taipei ahead of Wednesday’s sale. Continue Reading →

End of an era: Argyle Mine officially closed – by Arabella Roden (Jeweller Magazine – November 11, 2020)

https://www.jewellermagazine.com/

The source of more than 90 per cent of the world’s pink diamonds, the Argyle Mine in the Kimberley region of Western Australia, has been permanently closed by owner Rio Tinto after more than 30 years of operation.

The mine’s last day of operation was 3 November, with employees and traditional owners of the land attending an event to mark the start of the closure process.

Rio Tinto estimates it will take five years to dismantle and decommission the Argyle site, which will be rehabilitated, monitored, and returned to traditional owners. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Golden Celebration of Arctic Culture and Natural Resources Headlines Royal Canadian Mint’s September Collector Coin Launch

OTTAWA, ON, Sept. 1, 2020 /CNW/ – The Royal Canadian Mint has proudly issued a new collector coin crafted entirely of Nunavut-sourced gold. Entirely Arctic, from its design to its metal content, the reverse of the 2020 $10 Pure Gold Coin – An Inuk and a Qulliq, is the creation of Nunavut artist Ulaayu Pilurtuut.

Motifs of a traditional qulliq, an Inuit oil lamp that provides light and warmth, as well as inuksuit, symbolizing community and guidance, are powerful symbols of the artist’s culture and way of life. This beautifully crafted 1/20th oz. pure gold coin, along with several other numismatic keepsakes, launched today.

Another pure gold creation is the newest instalment in the 1/10th oz. pure gold coin series marking the 100th anniversary of the birth of legendary Canadian painter Alex Colville. The 25-cent illustration of a lynx appears on the third release from this six-coin series, which reinterprets each of the 1967 circulation coins designs he created in honour of Canada’s centennial. Continue Reading →

Cheaper diamonds fire life into the hidden world of gem trading (Bloomberg News/Mining Weekly – August 31, 2020)

https://www.miningweekly.com/

For the past six months, the global diamond hubs in Antwerp, Belgium, and Mumbai have been at a standstill, with cutting and polishing factories closed and trading floors shuttered.

Now, a capitulation on prices by the biggest miners is sparking the industry back to life. After refusing to budge on diamond prices during much of the pandemic, De Beers and Russian rival Alrosa PJSC decided last week they saw enough signs of recovering demand and seized the opportunity, cutting some prices by almost 10%.

The impact was instant, as rough diamond buyers snapped up about half a billion dollars in uncut gems, according to people familiar with the situation who asked not to be identified because the information is private. Continue Reading →

World’s Biggest Jewelry Firm Moves to Recycled Gold, Silver – by Christian Wienberg and Elena Mazneva (Bloomberg News – June 2, 2020)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/

(Bloomberg) — Pandora A/S, which makes more pieces of jewelry than any other company in the world, will stop relying on newly mined gold and silver and instead use only recycled precious metals.

The new policy, which takes effect in 2025, will help the Copenhagen-based company beef up its climate credentials and make it a more appealing target for investors eager to fill their portfolios with assets that meet environmental, social and governance goals.

Shares in Pandora jumped about 5% when trading started in the Danish capital, bringing gains in its market value this year to about 20%. The main Copenhagen benchmark index fell about 0.1% on Tuesday. A spokesman for Pandora said the change in policy won’t have any material impact on costs. Continue Reading →

I’m a Jewelry Nerd, So I Went to Africa to Learn Firsthand About Diamond Mines – by Lauren Eggertsen (Who What Where.com – December 5, 2019)

https://www.whowhatwear.com/

Unless you work in the jewelry industry, chances are everything you know about diamond mines is based on hearsay, stereotypes, or, if you’re really out of the loop, the movie Blood Diamond. The misconceptions surrounding this industry are monstrous, and up until recently, I knew little to nothing about what really goes into mining diamonds.

Am I a jewelry nerd? Yes. But no article found on the internet could have educated me as well as my recent trip to Africa where I got to see a diamond mine firsthand and ask all the questions I had been dying for someone to explain to me.

Forevermark, a subsidiary diamond company within De Beers Group, took me to its Orapa Mine in Botswana, and all I can say is, everything I thought I knew about diamond mines was completely wrong. Continue Reading →

France’s LVMH close to buying Tiffany after sweetening offer: sources – by Greg Roumeliotis (Reuters U.S. – November 24, 2019)

https://www.reuters.com/

(Reuters) – LVMH (LVMH.PA) is close to buying U.S. jewelry chain Tiffany & Co (TIF.N) for about $16.3 billion after sweetening its offer, sources said on Sunday, as the owner of Louis Vuitton and Bulgari aims to tap the fast-growing luxury jewelry market.

The two sides are close to an agreement after the French luxury goods company raised its offer price for the company known for its engagement rings and ties to Hollywood glamor to $135 per share, sources familiar with the matter said.

The boards of both companies will be presented with the terms of the deal on Sunday, one source said. A deal could be announced later on Sunday or on Monday, two other sources said. Continue Reading →

A Brief History of the Nickel – by Daniel A. Gross (Smithsonian Magazine – April 28, 2016)

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/

In honor of the coin’s 150th anniversary, read up on how the nickel came to be minted

The nickel wasn’t always worth five cents. In 1865, the U.S. nickel was a three-cent coin. Before that, “nickel cents” referred to alloy pennies. It turns out that even the name “nickel” is misleading. “Actually, nickels should be called ‘coppers,’” says coin expert Q. David Bowers. Today’s so-called nickels are 75 percent copper.

Those aren’t the only surprises hidden in the history of the nickel. The story of America’s five-cent coin is, strangely enough, a war story. And 150 years since it was first minted in 1866, the modest nickel serves as a window into the symbolic and practical importance of coinage itself.

To understand how the nickel got its name, you have to go back to an era when precious metals reigned supreme. In the 1850s, coins of any real value were made of gold and silver. In the event of a financial crisis—or worse, the collapse of a government—precious metal coins could always be melted down. They had intrinsic value. Continue Reading →