Alrosa Sold 42% of its Mined Diamonds in Quarter as Demand Fell

  • Gap between sales and output reflects collapse in demand
  • Nine-month output was 29.6 million carats, sales 23 million

Alrosa PJSC, the world’s largest rough-diamond producer by output, sold less than half of the stones it mined in the third quarter, reflecting a collapse in global demand.

The company mined about 11.6 million carats in the three months through September, an increase of 20 percent compared with the same period a year earlier, it said in a statement on its website Wednesday. The producer sold 4.9 million carats in the period. In the second quarter, Alrosa’s sales had lagged production by only 600,000 carats.

"Alrosa’s third-quarter results reflect the slowdown in demand” and has forced the company to stockpile a portion of output, said Konstantin Yuminov, an analyst at Raiffesenbank AO. "This situation may roll over to the next year."

Diamond producers, including Alrosa and De Beers, are under pressure to cut supply and lower prices as traders, cutters and polishers struggle to turn a profit amid a squeeze on credit and languishing jewelry sales. Prices for rough diamonds have slumped about 15 percent this year as China’s economic slowdown cut demand for luxury goods.

Alrosa produced 29.6 million carats of diamonds in the first nine months of the year, up 16 percent from a year earlier, and sold 23 million carats, it said. Revenue from rough diamond sales will be more than $550 million in the third quarter and at least $2.7 billion in the January to September period, the company said.

Alrosa shares declined 0.8 percent to 55.54 rubles by 10:41 a.m. in Moscow. Alrosa’s press service wasn’t immediately available for comment.

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