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Friday, May 27, 2022

Prices of engagement rings are set to soar as Britain’s jewellers face surging costs for diamonds

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The price of engagement rings could be set to soar as diamond prices have taken off since Russia invaded Ukraine.

Prices for High Street rings have already gone up by as much as ten per cent – but bespoke pieces from top jewellers are set to rocket.

It’s all because the war has disrupted exports of uncut diamonds mined in Russia, sending shockwaves through the industry.

The price of engagement rings could be set to soar as diamond prices have taken off since Russia invaded Ukraine (stock photo used)

The price of engagement rings could be set to soar as diamond prices have taken off since Russia invaded Ukraine (stock photo used)

The price of engagement rings could be set to soar as diamond prices have taken off since Russia invaded Ukraine (stock photo used)

Experts said a stronger dollar – the currency in which diamonds are bought and sold – and increases in other costs such as energy have also driven prices higher.

Chris Wiley, manager at Madison, a jeweller in Hatton Garden, said many jewellers were scrambling to absorb increased costs.

But he said diamond jewellery prices across the industry had typically risen by between five and ten per cent.

It's all because the war has disrupted exports of uncut diamonds mined in Russia, sending shockwaves through the industry. Pictured, a damaged building in Kharkiv today

It's all because the war has disrupted exports of uncut diamonds mined in Russia, sending shockwaves through the industry. Pictured, a damaged building in Kharkiv today

It’s all because the war has disrupted exports of uncut diamonds mined in Russia, sending shockwaves through the industry. Pictured, a damaged building in Kharkiv today

Ruth Donaldson, owner of bespoke jeweller Heirloom London, said the price rises were even higher at the top of the market.

An item that cost £3,000 in January could be priced at as much as £3,400 now, she said.

Prices for High Street rings have already gone up by as much as ten per cent ¿ but bespoke pieces from top jewellers are set to rocket (stock photo used)

Prices for High Street rings have already gone up by as much as ten per cent ¿ but bespoke pieces from top jewellers are set to rocket (stock photo used)

Prices for High Street rings have already gone up by as much as ten per cent – but bespoke pieces from top jewellers are set to rocket (stock photo used)

She said: ‘It might mean that somebody is having to compromise on the spec of the diamond, while still getting the same size.’

People might turn to buying sapphires or other stones, which have become more popular over the past few years, she added.

The US imposed sanctions on Russian diamond supplier Alrosa, which produces nearly a third of the world’s uncut diamonds.

That has caused a 20 per cent spike in rough diamond prices, according to financial information service Bloomberg.

Tom Price, a commodities analyst at investment bank Liberum, said the shortage had been exacerbated by increased demand when lockdown restrictions ended.

‘But Russia’s diamond trade being marginalised effectively extended this lift.’

Mr Price predicted high prices could fall later in the year as Russia found alternative buyers.

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