Monday, March 7, 2011

Harry Winston Diamonds Shine

Diamond prices have been on the rise recently with the cost of "rough diamonds" -- those harvested but unpolished and cut -- up more than 50% over the past four years, according to Harry Winston's research.

Industry research firm the Rapaport Group noted that five-carat diamonds of the highest-end color and clarity went for a retail price of just under $56,000 in 1996; the same stone would run a lucky customer around $144,000 in today's market.

Harry Winston is a 40% owner of the largest diamond mine in North America, the Diavik mine in Canada's Northwest Territories, worth around $4 billion in future revenue. It sells rough diamonds on the global wholesale market and then repurchases the finest cut gems for sale at its upscale retail outlets.

Harry Winston shares rose 5.7% to $13.91 in morning trading Monday. More than 400,000 shares were in play ninety minutes into the day's session, compared with their average daily trading volume of just 218,000.

Top-end jewelry retailer Tiffany saw its shares rise 1.3% Monday morning to trade at $63.39.

The Street

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