Precious Investments. Jewellery, diamonds, coloured gemstones?
admin 3 March 2016

 

papagallo-cartier-london
Parrot, Cartier London, Sold for € 60.000

 

Fine Jewels / Auction 258

 

After all this time and after having seen a profusion of jewellery from all periods and quality, after having heard to stories and family secrets, after having listened to confidences, after having removed false beliefs, urban legends, and especially after having “dimensioned” wishes and expectations simply by relating them to the reality of the market, I might, with good reason, give some good advice to those who, bewildered by the extremely unstable economic situation, are seeking to diversify their investments.

Yes, jewels and gems can be a reliable investment, but as always you must be well informed about them, listen to expert advice and avoid absolutely the “do it yourself.” A great experience and an infinite caution is needed to orientate in this field, and I must stress that Internet is not a Bible, especially if used hoping it is a shortcut that can replace the study and the attention that an investment will inevitably entail.

 

anello-7-kt-colombia
Ring with 16 navette cut diamonds and sapphire,  Sri Lanka 22,00 kt. Sold for € 42.500

The emotional factor is closely tied to jewels and gems; all of us when young kids were fascinated by the stories about the cave of Ali Baba, the existence of a the”Treasure Island” and the jewellery worn by kings, queens and princesses (the crown is their indispensable attribute), and all of us have read and heard of the treasures of ancient Egypt, the spoils of war in gold of the barbarians passing through the diamond aiguilettes of the Queen of the Three Musketeers to arrive to the treasures of the tsars, to those contained in the the Tower of London, belonging to the British royal family, to the magnificent pearls of our local Queen Margherita: all this significantly affects our imagination, and it is from all this that you have to run away when it comes to investments!

Some guidelines.

First of all I would like to highlight that the market obviously responds to the stresses of demand and that, since the inner one in Italy is, alas, in free fall, we can and must, wanting to sell, reach out to other countries with a particular attention to Asia, Emirates and United States. This will last for a long time and then, wanting to make a purchase that is also an investment, you should consult a professional who has a deep knowledge of the market and can direct you to the best, depending on your needs.

The most solid and durable investments are undoubtedly directed to the purchase of:

1) GEMS of COLOUR, natural, that have not undergone treatment of embellishment of any kind (not thermally or chemically treated to make the colour as smooth and transparent as possible). I recall that carat and cut must be consistent with the type of gems chosen: “Emerald” cut is so called because it is the most suitable to enhance this beautiful stone … It is essential to demand the gemological certificate of the stone which, in addition to caliber and treatment, in many cases will also indicate the possible geographical origin.

anello-diamanti-e-smeraldo
Ring, diamonds and emeralds, Colombia 7,10kt.  Sold for € 45.000

2) DIAMONDS, which can be a “splendid” investment. But it is also the most delicate one and should be followed more carefully because it is the most impressive and seemingly accessible (on the overused and abused “Rapaport”, the report of the the diamond stock market, I could and maybe I should write an essay). Of course I recommend to ask ALWAYS for gemological certificates and I also recall that not all laboratories are reliable and that the seller’s warranty DOES NOT REPLACE the said certificate. Normally I recommend a control of the market values every five years or so and this to see if it is appropriate to replace some stones with other more suitable to the market demand characteristics.

Working in an auction house I see the market changing with a geometric progression speed, impressive, especially in the last two years.

3) The BIG NAMES jewellery have given great satisfaction to those who have inherited or acquired them within the sixties, and this is because in most cases these are objects of great quality and unique pieces. Today the situation is much more complex and the purchase of a jewel like this must be done with great caution, knowing that it is a medium, long-term investment. However, there are very interesting contemporary authors still too little known to the Italian public: one name for all is with no doubt Michele della Valle.

I also recall that, like any other good, jewels and gems are subject to VAT taxation, and therefore this must be taken into account when thinking about their evaluation, just like buying a car, while for purchase at an auction house remember that taxation applies only to the portion of the award rights.

bracciale-van-cleef-and-arpels-platino-e-diamanti
Bracelet Van Cleef & Arpels, New York, platinum and diamonds. Sold for € 95.000

At the moment in Italy the possession of movable property is not taxed within one million euros.

In conclusion, I think it will be useful, if not indispensable, to always seek for the advice of an experienced professional in international markets, and their related legislation, able to provide you with all relevant information to guide you in this complex area.

I close stressing that we must not forget that part of the investment is undoubtedly in the enjoyment of the jewel that, when worn with joy, speaks of us, of our personality, makes us more beautiful, emphasizes an anniversary or a special event, softens us by telling us about those who gave it to us and why not, maybe brings us luck!

Titti Curzio

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