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Understanding Color Diamonds

A natural fancy colored diamond is one of the rarest elements found on earth. Certain colored diamonds are found more often than others, but even the most common are found less than 0.1% as often as a quality colorless diamond carat. Colored stones are found in only a handful of diamond mines in the world, and even then only appear as a small percentage of full production. Some colors, such as Fancy Red, Intense Violet, or Vivid Blues are considered so rare that most companies will never actually see them.

About Fancy Colored Diamonds

Diamonds form naturally in the earth under conditions of extreme temperature and pressure. Most diamonds are pure or nearly pure, causing them to be transparent and mostly colorless. Sometimes, though, other elements seep into the carbon atoms of the diamond, causing different colors to display. Gray and blue diamonds are caused by the presence of boron. Yellow and brown diamonds have been exposed to nitrogen. And diamonds that have been exposed to natural radiation turn green. Other natural colors include pink, purple, orange and even red. When the color is saturated enough, it is considered a Fancy Colored Investment Grade Diamond.

Fancy Colored Investment Grade Diamonds Fancy Colored Investment Grade Diamonds

GIA has established a color grade scale that encompasses the hue, tone and saturation of color as seen by an experienced gemologist. All fancy color diamonds are accompanied by a GIA color diamond report and consist of natural colors.

Natural colors means that their original nature, when mined, consisted of this color hue as exists in its final state. There is no additional treatment to the diamond to obtain the color that is seen within the diamond. At GIA several gemologists must be in agreement for the unknown diamond to be assigned a final fancy color grade. All color diamonds are tested for all known treatments that can enhance or impart color to a diamond.

HUE: The appearance of a diamond classified as red, green, blue, violet, or anything in between. A color description of a diamond can be a combination of two or more colors. When reading the color description of a diamond on the GIA diamond report the final color hue is the dominant color and any other color description before it is a modifier.

There are 8 dominant color hues that are used in the GIA grading system: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Violet and Purple. The Red is further defined by using Pink as the dominant color completing the scale to eight colors. Brown and Gray are not considered in the same context as the dominant 8 and are often used as modifiers for specific hues, but can stand alone with a fancy designation.

TONE: Lightness or Darkness. Tone color grading refers to the lightness or darkness of the hue, or primary color of the diamond.

SATURATION: Refers to the dominance of hue in the color, as well the intensity of it. Saturation is the measure of how strong and intense the primary color of the diamond actually is, such as light, deep, intense or vivid. A fully saturated color is the truest version of that color. Primary colors (red, yellow, and blue) are "true", so they are also fully saturated. There are six categories in the GIA Color Grading Scale that equate to color saturation: FL (Fancy Light), F (Fancy), FI (Fancy Intense), FDRK (Fancy Dark), FD (Fancy Deep) and FV (Fancy Vivid).

The Colored Diamond Market

The investment market for fancy colored diamonds works quite similar to other rare alternative investments. When purchasing an exquisite piece of art, one wouldn’t even consider the purchase without having someone first assess it, and perhaps consult with experts on its value and earning potential. Colored diamonds are very much the same. Since there are no fixed prices, you will need to find a well connected expert within the industry that you can trust.

Once you have a grip on the material, begin sourcing the colors that mesh with your financial requirements. One of the greatest benefits of colored diamonds is the ability to enjoy your investment without it devaluating over time. Hence, it only makes sense to invest in color that you or your loved ones will enjoy.



Comparison Trends & Price Performance*

Fancy Color Investment Grade Diamonds demonstrate high returns in comparison to other major investment opportunities in the market. An example of this, highlighted in the chart below, reveals a 350% increase over a 12 year period, from 2000-2012, for a 5 Carat Fancy Intense Yellow Investment Grade Diamond.

Fancy Color Diamonds Comparison Trends and Price Performance

The price per carat for fancy color diamonds has significantly increased over recent years.


Fancy Color Diamonds Price Index Chart

Pink Diamonds Compared to Colorless Diamonds


Pink Diamonds Compared to Colorless Diamonds

*Source: Comparison Trends & Price Performance figures provided by Leibish & Co.

The Advantages of Fancy Colored Diamonds



Stocks or bonds can often be liquidized at the click of a mouse. Other alternative investment options are somewhat more difficult to dissolve. How quickly one can liquidate an asset doesn’t necessarily impact potential investment returns, however, it is something investors need to take into account.

Investors are slowly becoming more acquainted with utilizing natural fancy colored diamonds as investment options. No one can predict the future, but after assessing the past price performance of colored diamonds, it is no wonder they exhibit investment characteristics that other investments can only dream about emulating.


Other Advantages

Privacy, Performance, Physical Possession. Recession Resistant, No Maintenance Costs, Long-Term Growth, World-wide Convertibility, Portability and No Lengthy Closings and Financing Contingencies.



Fancy Color Diamonds

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