LONDON — A rebound in U.S. consumer demand coupled with robust sales in China and India pushed profits at De Beers Societe Anonyme to $638 million in the year ended December 31, compared with losses of $32 million in the corresponding period last year.
All figures were reported by De Beers in dollars in a statement released Friday. Total sales of natural rough diamonds rose 53 percent to $5.88 billion from $3.84 billion as the price of rough stones made a strong post-recession recovery and diamond dealers increased their stocks.
Although De Beers remains cautious about the diamond market in 2011, the company is expecting “continued positive growth, albeit at a lower rate.”
De Beers added that the U.S. had a “better than expected Christmas retail season,” and that market is set to continue its recovery. The “exceptional growth” seen in China and India during the 12-month period is also expected to continue.
The long-term outlook is good, said De Beers. “Western consumer markets are recovering at the same time as demand in the emerging markets of China and India is expanding rapidly,” the statement said.