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A Possible Record-Breaking Diamond Headlines Upcoming Auction

Christie’s Geneva Magnificent Jewels auction is set for Tuesday, November 10 and the headliner is a stamp-sized pink diamond that could set a new record.   Here’s a look at that and four other stunners set to go under the hammer on that day.

1.  An Important Coloured Diamond Ring

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We wrote extensively about this stone in September.   It is a 16.08-carat Fancy Vivid pink diamond, the largest Fancy Vivid Pink ever sold at auction.  The pre-auction estimate for the diamond has been set for between $23 and $28 million (USD).   If it ends up selling for more than $33,768,000, it will break the record for the highest per-carat price for a pink diamond in history.

2.  An Important Coloured Diamond Pendant

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A massive 91.81-carat Fancy Vivid yellow cushion-shaped diamond features a pavé-set diamond loop at the top and is mounted in gold.   The pendant is expected to sell for between $3.9 and $4.9 million, an estimate that might be a little low considering the size of the stone.

3.  An Important Coloured Diamond Ring

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The centerpiece of this ring is a 21.52-carat Fancy brown-pink pear brilliant-cut diamond and includes baguette-cut diamond shoulders.   The estimates for this ring have been set at between $1.5 and $1.9 million.

4.  A Rare Coloured Diamond Ring

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The only blue diamond on our list, this is a Fancy dark bluish gray cushion-shaped diamond weighing in at 25.00 carats.   Driven by the rarity of the stone’s colour, the pre-auction estimate has been set for between $1.2 and $1.5 million.

5.  A Coloured Diamond and Diamond Ring

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The final item on our list, a 9.28 carat Fancy Vivid yellow oval brilliant-cut diamond flanked by triangular-cut white diamond shoulders.

A “Stamp Sized” Pink Diamond Could Set A Record

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The largest diamond of its kind is set to go to auction later this year and the sales price could be as high as $28 million.

The 16.08-carat diamond will be the highlight of Christie’s Magnificent Jewels auction in Geneva coming up on November 10.

The Fancy Vivid Pink diamond is described as “stamp-sized” and is the largest Fancy Vivid Pink diamond ever sold at auction.

“The fancy vivid pink grading means the hue is of the purest and strongest saturation,” said Rahul Kadakia, Christie’s head of jewelry.

“The color is even and shows no trace of a secondary color that may include purple, orange brown or grey in pink diamonds of a lower grade.”

The pre-auction estimate for the diamond has been set for between $23 and $28 million (USD).   The current per-carat record price for a pink diamond is $2.1 million.   To break that record, this diamond would need to sell for at least $33,768,000.   Considering that amount is only $5 million above the high-end estimate, it is possible that this record could fall.

A “Big Hole” For Sale

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The big news in the diamond world this week is that De Beers is looking to sell the famed Kimberley Mine in South Africa.

The mine, also referred to as “The Big Hole”, is one of the most famous diamond mines in the world.  The jaw-dropping measurements of the hole is that it has a circumference of 1.6 kilometers,  a surface area of 42 acres and is 214 meters deep!   Diamonds were first mined there in 1871 and over its first 40 years of existence, over 2700 kilograms of the rare stones were excavated.

BN-ID390_KIMBER_J_20150428164355Once above-ground diamond mining proved to be unsafe at that location, De Beers continued to mine the underground kimberlite pipes for their diamonds.   In 2006, De Beers stopped all mining operations at the pit and started going through all the rock that had been previously excavated to find any diamonds that may have been missed.   This previously recovered material also called “tailings” have proved to be quick lucrative for De Beers.  In 2014 alone, they was able to uncover 722,000 carats of diamonds.

De Beers is looking to sell the mine quickly with interested parties needing to confirm their expressions of interest by May 29, 2014.   They hope to have the entire sale completed within a couple of months.

The current timeline for the mine is that it can remain open until 2018 with the chance of the new buyer being able to extend its life until 2030.   The on-site museum and tourist attractions owned by De Beers are not expected to be part of any possible deal.

The Rarest of the Rare…Fancy Red Diamonds

In the world of diamonds, Natural Fancy Red diamonds are among the most rare.   Less than 0.1% of all diamonds found in the world can be considered Natural Fancy Red and the bulk of those weigh less than half a carat.

The red color in these diamonds is not caused due to a foreign element present during its formation, it is due to irregularities present within the inner structure of the diamond, the crystal lattice.

Here’s a look at the five most famous red diamonds

1.  Moussaieff Red Diamond

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The largest red diamond ever recovered, the Moussaieff Red weighs in at 5.11 carats.   Originally found by a Brazilian farmer in the 1990s by the Abaetezinho river in a region known as Alto Paranaiba.   The stone, originally called The Red Shield, weighed in at 13.9 carats in its rough form.   It was purchased by famed jeweller Shlomo Moussaieff in 2001-2002 and remains part of   his company’s inventory to this day.

2.  The Rob Red Diamond

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Noted diamond writer Stephen Hofer called the Rob Red Diamond “the most saturated and purest red diamond measured visually and instrumentally to date in the world’.   Weighing in at a slight 0.59-carats, no one is sure about the stone’s recovery, it is assumed to have been found in an alluvial deposit located within the remote interior of Brazil.

3.  The DeYoung Red Diamond

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Found in South Africa in the late 1920s, the DeYoung Red Diamond features a round brilliant cut and weighs 5.03 carats.  Unfortunately, no one is sure of the diamond’s current whereabouts.

4.  The Hancock Red

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A former record breaker in the color diamond world, The Hancock Red is a 0.95-carat Fancy Purplish-Red stone.   The diamond was originally purchased at auction in 1956 by Warren Hancock for $13,500.   When it was put up for auction again in 1987, it sold for $926,000/carat.   The previous per carat record for a diamond was $127,000/carat!

5.  The Kazanjian Red Diamond

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Recovered in South Africa in the mid-1920s, the Kazanjian Red weighs in at 5.05 carats.   In its rough form, it was a whopping 35 carats until formed into an elegant emerald cut.   The diamond spent 30 years in a private collection before being purchased by Kazanjian Bros. Inc.

Record Setting Diamond Tender For Rio Tinto

Rio Tinto celebrated their 30th anniversary with a record-setting diamond tender earlier this month.   Featuring 54 rare pink and red diamonds, sales from the tender were the highest per-carat in the company’s history.

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Leading up to the tender, industry experts were practically salivating as the lots included four Fancy Red diamonds, the most the company has ever offered at once.   In their three-decade long history, they have only had 13 of these Fancy Red gems available at tenders and only three of these rare stones have ever been above 1 carat in size.

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The clear favourite among the red diamonds was the 1.21-carat radiant-cut Argyle Cardinal.   The heavily bid upon stone was purchased by Glen Bakker Jewels, however, details on the amount of the sale have not been released.

Red diamonds are among the rarest of the colour diamond world.  Red diamonds get their colour from defects in the interior structure of the stone called the crystal lattice.  They are mostly found in the Argyle Mine of Australia and Brazil and make up less than 0.1% of the diamonds recovered around the world.

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The most famous red diamond is arguably the Hancock Red, named after famed color diamond collector Warren Hancock.   Rumour has it that Hancock purchased the stone for $13,500 in 1956.   It was sold at auction by Christie’s in 1987 for $880,000 or a massive $926,000 per carat.   That per carat price was a record for diamonds that lasted for 20 years.

 

 

Diamonds In Antarctica?

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Geologists have found Kimberlite rock within the mountains of Antarctica meaning that the frozen continent could be a new source of diamonds in the future.

Australian geologist Dr. Greg Yaxley and his team found three samples of Kimberlite in the slopes of Mount Meredith in the northern Prince Charles Mountains of East Antarctica.

Kimberlite, named after the town of Kimberley in South Africa, is a type of rock in which occasionally diamonds are found.   The rock occurs under the earth’s surface in carrot-shaped formations called Kimberlite pipes and are the main source of diamonds found on the planet.

Do not expect any immediate results from this find as the Protocol on Environmental Protection To The Antarctic Treaty Of 1998 dictates that mining on the continent for commercial purposes can not take place.    This part of the Antarctic Treaty System will be up for review once again in 2041.

Even if this Treaty was not in place, considering Antarctica is 98% covered in ice, mining for diamonds would be a slow, cold and somewhat dangerous.   But who knows what technology will be available once commercial enterprises are allowed to mine for the valuable stone.

Who wants to line up to be the first person with a diamond from Antarctica?

The Red Diamond No One Is Talking About

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Lost in the news surrounding the record-breaking auction sales of the diamonds “The Pink Star” and “The Orange”, a little red gem also made broke records this week.

At Christie’s auction in Geneva on Tuesday, a 1.92-carat fancy red diamond sold for more than 3.25 million, the most ever paid at auction for a red diamond.  The early word on the stone was that would sell between $2 – $3 million, so the final figure was considered a surprise.

Red diamonds are considered the most rare of all colour diamonds and are caused by a specific structure of the atoms within the diamond.   If this structure produces what are called grain lines, the diamond appears red.  The more the lines, the deeper the colour.   The deeper the colour, the more rare the stone.

The most famous red diamond in history is the 5.11 carat Moussaieff Red Diamond.   It is considered the world’s largest red diamond and was found by a Brazilian farmer in the Abaetezinho River in 1990.   As a rough stone, it weight 13.9 carats.   After being purchased and cut by the William Goldberg Diamond Corporation, It was then bought in the early 2000s by Shlomo Moussaieff for an undisclosed price.