Mar 29

Botswana Diamonds Gains from Weak Pound

RAPAPORT… Botswana Diamonds recorded a profit in the first half of the
fiscal year, benefiting from a drop in the value of the British pound, the
exploration company said this week.

Total comprehensive income stood at $75,799 (GBP 61,000) in
the six months that ended December 31, 2016, compared with a loss of $340,472
(GBP 274,000) during the same period a year earlier.

The profit received a boost from a $244,792 (GBP 197,000)
currency gain, as the Botswana pula appreciated 9% during the half-year against
the British pound – the currency in which the miner reports.

Mar 29

Gold Price Defies ETF Outflow as UK Triggers Brexit, Pound Whips

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Mar 29

Gübelin Using Nanotech for Emerald Traceability

RAPAPORT… Gübelin Gem Lab has unveiled a radical solution for tracing
the origin of emeralds, using nanotechnology to mark stones with an invisible
imprint that is accessible at any stage of the supply chain.

Branded the “emerald paternity test,” the technology is a “true
game-changer for the colored-gemstone industry,” the Switzerland-based
laboratory said in a statement Monday.

DNA-based nanoparticles are applied to rough emeralds at the
mine and are designed to survive the stages through which the gemstone passes,
including cleaning, cutting, polishing, transportation and setting. They can be decoded at any point in their journey from
mine to jewelry.

This is the first time nanotechnology – the branch of technology
dealing with dimensions smaller than 100 nanometers – has been used for this
purpose, the lab claimed.

The tiny particles are small enough not to impact the
stone’s appearance, even with an optical microscope, meaning they will not
affect a stone’s grading properties.

“This technology offers all stakeholders along the entire
supply chain, from the miner to the final customers, proof of the exact source
of emeralds, instilling confidence and creating trust,” said Daniel Nyfeler, the
organization’s managing director. “It enables a new level of transparency for
the gemstone trade.”

The House of Gübelin, which operates the lab, introduced the
tracing technology for an emerald extracted at the Belmont mine in Brazil. The
company added the nanoparticles to the emerald directly at the mine, and the
stone is now on a platinum ring.

Mar 29

Currency Gains Bolster Firestone Earnings

RAPAPORT…

Firestone Diamonds’ bottom line improved in the second half of 2016 as its Liqhobong mine operation in Lesotho benefited from the appreciation of the local currency against the U.S. dollar.

Total comprehensive income stood at $9.7 million during the six-month period, compared
with a loss of $31.5 million the previous year, the company reported on Tuesday.

The Liqhobong mine recorded a lower value
of debt in the local currency as the dollar fell 7.9% against the Maloti, with
other currency-related gains resulting as well, Firestone said in a statement.

Excluding these gains, however, the miner’s loss after tax
almost doubled to $8.8 million from $4.6 million a year ago.

Production at Liqhobong started in October, with
the first two diamond sales occurring in February and March in Antwerp. The combined sales fetched $13.7 million for 127,590 carats of rough, achieving
an average price of $107 per carat.

Mar 29

Israel Bourse Slices $3M off Expenses

RAPAPORT… The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) has reduced membership fees for 200 companies after a cost-cutting program resulted in $2.8 million (ILS 10 million) in annual savings.

The bourse has extended its bursary scheme – which entails a 50% subsidy for companies that cannot afford the full membership sum – so that a total of 400 firms will now receive the discount, IDE president Yoram Dvash said in a letter to diamantaires last week. That represents about 14
percent of the 2,800-strong membership.

The bourse’s current
leadership has worked to drive down central bourse expenses without
compromising on security and quality, according to Dvash (pictured), who took over the
presidency in December 2015. The downturn in the diamond industry requires a
“modest” management style that is both effective and careful with expenses
while easing the burden for bourse members, he explained.

Measures include
technological security alternatives such as automated entrances to the exchange
and its parking lots, and biometric face recognition. Maintenance costs have
fallen 10%, Dvash said, while overall expense reductions have beaten
expectations, enabling the expansion of the bursary program.

“We’ve increased security
and dramatically reduced costs in one go,” he wrote. “We’ve slashed wage
expenses, the number of consultants, maintenance costs and general expenses, and
in total we’ve saved about ILS 10 million per year.”

Mar 29

‘Most Secure Coin In the World’ ?

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Mar 29

Shandong Gold says it may have found Chinas biggest gold mine

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Mar 28

Goldcorp and Barrick team up on Chile gold mine projects

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Mar 28

Gold and Silver Market Morning: Mar 28 2017

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Mar 28

Gold Prices Bullish Below 200-Day MA and 2011 Downtrend as Dollar Unwinds Last of Trump Trade

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