The story of millennials rejecting diamonds caught fire. But there was always something suspiciously trendy about it, especially in light of a 2016 report from within the diamond industry showing that sales numbers in the US were only rising.
Now, as Bloomberg Markets and the UK Daily Mail are reporting, De Beers has released a new set of numbers showing that demand for diamonds in the States continues to grow. In 2016, Americans spent $41 billion on the stones, up 4.4% from the previous year and representing half of the world’s overall diamond expenditure. This has prompted headlines like “Flush With Cash, Americans Buying More Diamonds Than Ever” and “In US, Diamonds Are A Millennial’s Best Friend.” Both a far cry from this one, from The Daily Beast last March: “Why Have Millennials Fallen Out of Love With Diamonds?”
As I’ve said before, the negative arguments about millennials and diamonds have always been a bit flimsy. But now that the tone is changing, we can expect to see more coverage of a positive nature in the coming year. Why? For one thing, surveys conducted by places like The Knot and JamesAllen.com consistently show that when it comes to weddings, millennials are actually much more mindful of tradition than they’re generally thought to be. In fact, a new survey out this week from online diamond retailer JamesAllen.com confirms that younger men are actually more, not less, likely to propose on bended knee with a diamond ring in hand than men from older generations.
Rachelle Bergstein, CONTRIBUTOR Forbes