The Diamond Trading Company’s (DTC) February sight achieved an estimated value of $525 million. While the DTC, De Beers marketing and sales unit, had announced a price increase in the high single digits prior to the sight, the company also changed its assortment of goods to enable sightholders to profit on their boxes. Sight participants noted higher increases in the cheaper Indian goods, as well. Nonetheless, their comments were mixed, with some observers suggesting that De Beers left room for sightholders to profit and others saying that premiums were still inflated.
In February, when premiums were softer, buyers were willing to pay based on the existing scarcities in rough, one sightholder noted. Others disagreed, assuming that the large quantities of rough coming to the market reflected DTC’s commitments under sightholder’s intentions to offer (ITOs), rather than strong demand. Sightholders submitted their ITOs in 2009 at the height of the downturn, so DTC filled a large portion of their orders early in the contract period, according to a market participant. The March sight will comprise the final sale of the current ITOs.