Jewelers mutual – the jeweler’s union – says it has been inundated with applications from potential diamond buyers who have been seeking to sell their diamonds at a loss to a broker, which it says could be a serious breach of the rules.
The group’s national president, Michael Wojcicki, said there was an increased demand for diamond jewellery after the introduction of a two-year window of trading that allowed people to sell up to 25% of their diamonds for cash.
He said a broker’s application for a diamond buyer licence could cost up to $300,000 and is now available for sale at more than 50 jewelers in the US and abroad.
“The number of applications for a licence to sell a diamond is going up, it’s very significant, it is increasing, we see it as an opportunity to increase our ability to serve our members,” he said.
“We’re seeing an increase in the number of people who want to sell at a profit, and this is a way for them to do it.”
“When we have the opportunity to work with them, to serve them with diamonds that they want, we are happy to do that,” he added.’
The whole world is interested’The number one source of demand for diamonds is China, which has a population of around two billion people.
In 2014, China accounted for 13% of the world’s diamond market.
Wojcickeri said the increase in demand has been a huge boon to jewelers worldwide.
“When I first came to the US in 1997, it was not a significant market.
It wasn’t the gold and silver markets.
It was the diamond market,” he told Al Jazeera.”
But the demand has increased so much that we are seeing people wanting to sell now for the first time.”
In China, the demand is greater than anywhere else in the world.
There are people who are interested in diamonds.
The whole world has been interested in the diamonds.
They are the most sought-after commodity in the history of the planet.”‘
Dirty tricks’The group said it had not received any application from any broker who has sold more than 5% of his or her diamond for cash since February.”
There is no reason to think that we will ever see a broker or jeweler selling their diamonds.
We are not going to sell diamonds to the highest bidder in the marketplace. “
In the long run, the jewel broker has a much bigger business than the jewel buyer.”
“We are not going to sell diamonds to the highest bidder in the marketplace.
We are going to be very clear that if a broker is interested in selling their diamond, that the diamond is theirs to sell,” he continued.”
If a person wants to sell, we can work with the jewel dealer, but we’re not going back and asking for money.”
The US Department of Justice says the vast majority of diamond brokers and jewelers are licensed by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
The Department of Commerce said it does not allow dealers to sell jewelry without a broker license.
In a statement, the US Department’s Office of Investment Regulation said: “This is a critical industry that relies heavily on licensed jewelers to deliver a high quality service.
The department is reviewing the regulations of the US Diamond Sales Commission to ensure that all dealers are compliant with the requirements.””
This review is expected to take several months.
Until this review is complete, the department will continue to enforce existing regulations and seek to strengthen existing compliance,” the statement said.