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The fundamentals of the market seem sound, hut this is not properly reflected in the general mood in the industry and the marketplace. Both members of the diamond sector and the consuming public appear to be decidedly antsy.
The malaise was apparent already in the major trading centers during the fourth quarter of 2011. During a period that traditionally is considered a yardstick for the new year, exports from Israel, Belgium and India slipped when compared to the same three-month period a year earlier, led largely by softer rough diamond prices.
What was puzzling was that the mood in the trading centers did not really reflect what was …