Who are Rapaport
Diamonds.net is the website of, Martin Rapaport, a diamond dealer and somewhat of a crusader in the diamond industry.
Martin Rapaport is the founder of the Rapaport Diamond Report. This has become the ‘authority’ on the price of diamonds throughout the world. He is a member of the World Diamond Council as well as the board of Jewelers for Children and an early proponent of the Kimberley Process.
He is also the host of the Rapaport International Diamond Conference which is held annually in new York and serves as an industry forum between the various parties in the diamond business such as the jewelry industry, governmental agencies, and various diamond industry interests.
Martin Rapaport began his career in the diamond business as a cleaver and rough sorter in Antwerp, Belgium. In 1975 he began brokering rough and polished diamonds in New York City and in 1978, he created the now famous Rapaport Prices List.
He has since created many other businesses but all relating to the diamond industry, including the electronic trading network for traders RapNet and INDEX, and diamond-related news in print and web formats.
Martin Rapaport is now somewhat of a legend within the diamond industry, and is often recognized for his characteristic signature bow tie.
Rapaport Products and Service
One of the most salient products to come from Martin Rapaport is the Rapaport Diamond Report in originated in 1978 and which has been well positioned now as the de facto standard authority baseline for pricing wholesale polished diamonds. The fact that diamonds now cost considerably less is mainly attributed to the Rapaport Diamond Report
Most of the diamond business agreements and dealer sales these days are based on the Rapaport Diamond Report or Rap or List prices.
Some people argue whether Rap set the diamond price or simply reports them. It is a fact that since the report was issued the price of diamonds has dropped but it does not make a lot of difference these days. The fact is, every dealer and diamond merchant uses Rap.
In the trade Diamond dealers ask, “how much back?” Asking for the price per carat, or worse still, the price of the stone shows you are a beginner. Only at the last stages of haggling would you work out the stone cost if it was say $5013 you might demand “OK, round it to $5K!”
To view the Rapaport Diamond Report, you have to be a diamond dealer and you have to pay for the privilege of course. Virtually every dealer works from this list these days. The list are copyright and these copyrights are strictly enforced.
Rap lists diamonds in separate grids of carat weight, with prices in $100’s per carat in rows from D to M for Color and separate columns for each Clarity grade (including SI3 which is a split of SI2 and I1).
Subscribers receive weekly updates of round prices and a monthly update including fancy shape prices (in the center pages of an informative magazine). Price rises are printed bold and rare falls are in bold italics.
Use of Rap has evolved over time. Diamond Traders tend to establish discount levels by agreement between cutters, dealers, retailers and e-tailers dependent on various criteria such as payment terms, volume etc. Cut, Fluorescence and other features such as Symmetry and Polish are not included on the list resulting in some big variations in discounts.
Last Word on Rapaport
Martin Rapaport’s impact within the industry has been profound and resulted in a marked change in the attitude towards diamonds as well as affecting the price of diamonds in the long term.
His commercial price guides have made manipulation of prices more difficult in the diamond industry, and are considered, by many as a step toward commoditizing diamonds. In fact Neil D. Reiff once commented that Rapaport is “destroying” the diamond industry with trying to commoditize diamonds, and that his price guide no longer reflects the wholesale value of diamonds as they are sold, instead, influences what those prices are before they go to market. Rapaport has countered this with the statement that diamonds are not unique, as De Beers marketing claims, and are subject to the same laws of supply and demand as anything else.
In fact, Martin Rapaport is an open advocate of commoditizing diamonds. He tried once in 1982 by filing out a contract proposal to the New York Commodities Exchange to create a diamond commodity market. The effort failed, he claimed, because the “diamond industry didn’t want price transparency.” He is currently writing a new proposal and believes it will only be a matter of time before the idea succeeds, as long as a sufficient criteria of standardization is created. Rapaport has said that diamonds are “definitely a commodity.”
“You buy and sell them for cash. They’re a natural resource with limited supply; they’re well defined; they’re certified; they’re analyzed, graded, tradable around the world.”
Martin Rapaport has been likened to an affable and bubbly version of Bill Gates. A genius with an economics background, he grew up in a diamond family and rose to fame by reporting wholesale diamond prices during the 1979-80 commodity boom when 1.00ct D Flawless reached a dealer price of $36,000 (twice today’s list price).
He has since built a substantial diamond information and service business, and like Gates, he is loved and hated but never ignored.
The Rapaport Diamond Report and The Diamond Price Report are trade price market analysis and indicator tools of HIGH CASH ASKING PRICES. Price reports do not factor in higher prices for better proportions and finish or lower prices for poor proportions / cut, etc.
The Price lists are designed for diamond industry professionals. Not for customers or clients.
So in all diamond situations, if you are buying diamonds always remember to do your due diligence.
Many stores who claim to sell “at or below Rap” or “a percentage under New York Wholesale”, diamonds priced below the market, are simply offering poor quality diamonds, ‘makes’ or dogs that the regular trade can’t move. The Also watch out the vendor who misrepresents the quality of an uncertified diamond. There is never a guarantee with an uncertified diamond. Keep in mind that certified diamonds always cost more than uncertified diamonds.
When it comes to the price of diamonds, you get what you pay for which means you don’t get what you don’t pay for!
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