Where is the Jewelry Industry heading?

The Future Looks Bright

The jewelry industry in 2016 saw back-to-back gains as consumer confidence rose. So, how does 2017 and the future look? Well, it’s good news! The overall sentiment is that the industry will continue to expand – but at a moderate pace. NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said in a recent press release “All of the fundamentals are in a good place, giving strength to consumers and lending us to believe that this will be a very positive year.” If this is true, it will be a welcome development for the retail sector that has shown some downturn as “brick and mortar” stores continue to close.

Jewelry sales have grown in 2017 with sales up by 1.2%. This could best be contributed to the recent launch of diamond marketing campaigns that are targeted at Millennials. This campaign focuses on redefining the symbol of diamonds.

We are excited to see that the future is bright for the industry. To request a FREE collection container and get started refining your precious metal scrap, please fill out the form here: www.core-scientific.com/kit 

How Jewelers Are Helping To Stop The Sell of Conflict Diamonds?

In today’s market consumers are sensitive about where their products come from. It doesn’t come as a surprise that jewelry buyers are concerned about possibly buying a conflict diamond, especially as the trade has been rife with controversy. According to this article, “About 65 percent of diamonds are mined in Africa, where warlords and rebels in countries such as Angola, Côte d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia and Sierra Leone have used profits to fund bloody wars.”

Consumers have a lot of buying power these days. And jewelers are taking notice of this need to ensure they avoid selling conflict diamonds. Since 2003, jewelers have adhered to the Kimberley Process (KP), the international initiative to increase transparency and oversight in the diamond industry.

One company, Brilliant Earth, advertises and sells ethically produced jewelry that does not “come at a high human or environmental cost,” according to its mission statement.

“Many consumers today are more interested in understanding where their purchases come from and the practices behind them,” Kathryn Edison Money, Brilliant Earth’s vice president of strategy and merchandising, said in an email. “We’ve found this is especially true for a purchase as significant as a diamond ring.”

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As JBT members we are excited to help you get the highest return on your precious metal scrap such as fillings, bench sweeps etc. Contact me today at melissa@core-scientific.com to request your FREE collection container or call me at 877-308-2388.

Sources: http://www.washdiplomat.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=15410:jewelers-weed-out-conflict-diamonds-so-consumers-can-buy-bling-in-good-conscience&catid=1558&Itemid=428

How the Retail Jeweler is Vital to the Consumer?

It seems the retail industry, and specifically “brick and mortar” stores are at a tipping point. They have come under serious threat from online retailers – like Amazon – that rely on e-commerce to reach consumers.

 

You may think this trend affects retail jewelers – but it is quite the opposite. Fine goods, like jewelry, keep consumers coming into their stores. While the “brick and mortar” stores may be going away for some corporations like Sears and Macy’s they are here to stay for retail jewelry stores.

 

Why are retail jewelers vital to the consumer? According to the FT.com, “The retail jeweler is vital to guide the customer through the labyrinth of certification and grading, and the nuances of quality and price structure.”

 

That is why they note that nothing can replace the personal touch and expertise a consumer gets from a retail jeweler.

 

Far from obsolete, he or she is more relevant than ever in today’s technological world; nothing can replace their experience, fine judgment and expertise. The internet will never be a substitute for the personal touch.

 

However, as the rise in e-commerce and growing acceptance of “buying without touching” becomes the norm, retail jewelers need to innovate. That’s why the National Jeweler magazine states reading Doug Stevens The Retail Revival, important for all retailers. They state that,

 

“The book shows what retail might look like in the future and, quite honestly, it should be required reading for retailers and for any business that depends on retailers to make a living. His basic premise is that retailers will have to make a very clear decision about what they want to be–either entirely and expertly price-driven, with all the attendant challenges of being the low-cost provider, or they must fully and completely embrace the high end of the landscape, with great quality, differentiated products delivered in a very focused way and a great customer experience. “

 

This is an exciting time for the retail jeweler. As JBT members we are excited to help you get the highest return on your precious metal scrap – in order to help you be ahead of the trend. Contact me today via melissa@core-scientific.com to request your FREE collection container or call me at 877-308-2388.

Sources: https://www.ft.com/content/e7de2aa4-4ab9-11e7-919a-1e14ce4af89b?mhq5j=e2

http://www.nationaljeweler.com/independents/retail-profiles/4124-what-will-become-of-retail-jewelry-stores

Aqua Regia & Stone Removal

You, like many other jewelers and pawnbrokers, use a stone removal service to either resale gems or diamonds, from jewelry pieces or create new pieces for customers. The best and preferred method used for removal of the stones is called Aqua Regia.

History of Aqua Regia

What you may not know is that this process dates back to 1300 AD. Aqua Regia (Latin for “Royal Water”) was first discovered by European alchemist Pseudo-Geber, when he mixed common salt with vitriol (Sulphuric acid). According to historians, this process was one of the ways that alchemists tried to find the philosopher’s stone. Which interestingly enough, is the legendary substance for turning mercury into gold.

Another interesting fact about Aqua Regia is that during WWII Hungarian chemist George de Hevesy took the Nobel Prize medals of Max von Laue and James Franck and used the process of aqua regia to dissolve them into liquid. He was able to keep them safe from the Nazis on a shelf in his laboratory, and following the war take the gold to be remade into new Noble Prize medals.

Today this process is used in refineries and laboratories to dissolve gold and platinum to extract gems and diamonds from jewelry.

Why is Aqua Regia the preferred method?

There are two main reasons why a jeweler or pawnbroker should make sure this process is used for their stone removal.

  1. The removal of the stones is done properly without damage to the gems or diamonds
  2. It reduces the likelihood of losing any of the stone materials

Typically when a refinery handles the stone removal, they have an on-site laboratory. However it’s essential you verify that the refinery handling your stone removal service has a laboratory on-site. Why? Simply because they have the methods in place to securing receive the material, conduct aqua regia, and separate out the stones for safe and secure shipping of the product back to you.

Request the full guide for Aqua Regia and Stone Removal by contacting Melissa Stark at melissa@core-scientific.com

 

Core Scientific – We offer a full-service stone remove process. Our on-site laboratory and cutting-edge technology allow us to remove gems and diamonds from gold, silver, and platinum. With the use of Aqua Regia, the chemical process, we are able to extract the stones in an efficient manner without risk to the quality and beauty of the precious and semi-precious gems.

Tips for Shipping Your Dental Scrap

4 Do’s and 1 Don’t For Shipping Your Dental Scrap Materials

Shipping your material to a refinery should not be a difficult process. You should be able to rely on your refiner to provide the logistics of your material to make sure it is securely and properly received.

Here are 4 Tips for Shipping Your material:

  1. Do ensure that your material is shipped in a secure and marked plastic container. Our collection containers contain non-specific labels, which means no one will be aware of it contents. It is sturdy with a secure top for shipping.
  2. Do include a packing slip and label on all containers. When we provide you with a collection container we include a return label for your convenience. Simply contact us when you are ready to ship or alternatively we can create scheduled monthly or quarterly scheduled pickups.
  3. Do track your shipment. Every shipment will contain a tracking number. Make sure to keep this tracking number handy so you can refer to it if needed.
  4. Do weigh your material. It’s very important that you weigh your material. Read more here about why you should weigh your material.

DON’T work with a refinery that does not provide you with paperwork on the receiving weight. We’ve heard many refiners do not provide paperwork on the weight of what was used and processed. Protecting yourself is important.

The Rise of Platinum and Palladium

Precious Metals: Platinum and Palladium

These metals have been used in the auto industry and in high-end jewelry for a long time. Recently, we have seen an increase in people investing in these two precious metals. This is due, in part, to how rare platinum is, and the abundance and industrial uses of palladium.

According to JM Bullion, “Because of [Palladium’s] similarities with platinum and generally cheaper price, palladium shares the market with those seeking to buy platinum. The price of palladium is volatile and unpredictable — giving investors ample opportunity for speculative profit.”

Palladium is a great way to invest in precious metals but at a low cost. Plus there’s a wide gap in price between palladium buyers and sellers. Preciousmetals.com says, “Palladium saw the greatest increase in value over the period from 2010 to 2014 when compared to Gold, Silver, and Platinum. The precious metal went from an opening price per ounce in January of 2010 of $419 and closed 2014 with a cost of $815 – nearly double.” 

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The Ongoing Trend

Since early 2016, this trend has continued to rise with platinum and palladium. According to a recent article, Platinum takes the limelight from gold with the best month in four years, platinum has been up 12% since July, putting prices on track for the best month since 2012 and Palladium are even better, jumping 17%, the most since 2008.

The drive in these two metals is attributed to better auto sales in China, as well as concerns over labor practices in South America and loose monetary policies from banks around the world.

Analysts have speculated the demand for these metals will rise, in the long term.

Sources: http://www.jmbullion.com/investing-guide/types-physical-metals/platinum-vs-palladium/

http://www.preciousmetals.com/blog/2015/01/palladium-cheap/

http://www.mineweb.com/news/platinum-group-metals/platinum-takes-limelight-from-gold-with-best-month-in-four-years/

Rare Coins and Currency

The rare coin market has evolved over the last few years. Rare coins and currency are a multi-billion dollar a year business. The market is growing with at least 5,000 active coin companies in the United States. Collectors of rare coins or currency are interested in the investment aspect of the “hobby”. Recent auction results show that sales of coins and currency can exceed $100,000,000 per year. Heritage Auctions alone said that the annual rare coin sales is over $500,000,000.

Over the past year, there’s a trend growing amongst rare coins. According to Blanchard, “Many high-end collections came to market and generated huge interest as well as dollars. The D. Brent Pogue Collection was the highlight of the year and it took 35 years to amass and contained only 650 coins, but the presale estimate for the collection was $200 million. This collection boasted some of the rarest numismatic treasures known, such as the 1822 gold half eagle that the Pogue family purchased for $687,500 in 1982.”

There is a lot of money in rare coins, and the top 5 rarest items are:

  1. Quarter Eagle:39,101 was paid for a 1914 version of this coin in January 2012.
  2. Half Eagle:An 1884 version of a half eagle commanded $39,100 on the rare coins marketplace in November 2010.
  3. Eagle: The highest price paid for a 1907 $10 eagle gold coin was $39,780 in September 2010.
  1. Double Eagle: In the early 20th century, President Theodore Roosevelt sought to redesign many U.S. mints during his term, and commissioned a famous American sculptor, Augustus Saint-Gaudens, to design the version pictured below. These coins are made of 90% gold and 10% copper alloy, and the most paid for one of these rarities from 1907 was $39,963, bought in January 2012.
  2. Three Dollar Piece: The coin is 90% gold and 10% copper alloy. Only about 530,000 of them were minted, a small amount for U.S. coins, and the line was discontinued in 1889. $39,100 was paid for an 1887 three-dollar piece in March 2009.

Collecting and selling rare coins and currency can be a profitable and exciting new hobby. Everyone should be on the lookout for any heirlooms that may be collecting dust in the attic. They could be worth a small fortune.

About Core Scientific

Core Scientific, an industry leader in precious metals refining. Request your FREE shipping kit today by clicking here.

Sources

http://www.foxnews.com/science/2016/09/14/rare-gold-roman-coin-discovered-in-jerusalem.html

http://www.sbcgold.com/blog/top-5-rare-american-gold-coins/

https://www.blanchardgold.com/market-news/the-longview/rare-coin-market-looks-strong-in-2016-and-beyond-heres-what-to-collect/

http://www.coinweek.com/education/coin-collecting-large-rare-coin-market/

 

Diamond sales rising ahead of holiday season

DeBeers, the world’s largest diamond producer, announced a recent boom in sales of gems. This is as retailers stockpile before the holiday season.

diamond sales
Diamonds

According to Bloomberg News, They sold an impressing $630 million of rough diamonds in its seventh offering this year, up from $528 million in the previous sale, the company said in a statement this week.

“We saw healthy demand for our rough diamonds,” De Beers chief executive officer Bruce Cleaver said in the statement to Mineweb.com. “Manufacturers brought forward some of their demand in order to cut and polish rough diamonds in time for the important retail selling season.”

The holiday period for the diamond industry is from Thanksgiving in November. It also continues through the Lunar New Year in Asia in January or early February, right before Valentine’s Day. Bloomberg News states, Rough-diamond prices have rebounded 4.7% this year and it seems like De Beers and rival Alrosa PJSC will cut off supply to try to support the market.

So this marks good news for the upcoming holiday season.

About Core Scientific

Core Scientific, an industry leader in precious metals refining. Request your FREE shipping kit today by clicking here.

Sources

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-09-06/de-beers-boosts-diamond-sales-as-customers-stock-up-for-holidays

http://www.mineweb.com/news/diamonds-and-gems/de-beers-boosts-diamond-sales-as-customers-stock-up-for-holidays/

http://www.jckonline.com/blogs/cutting-remarks/2016/08/25/what-jewelry-industry-can-expect-holiday