2008/11/21

Sapphire sets record but many lots fail: Christie's


GENEVA (Reuters) – A large Kashmir sapphire ring set a world record at auction on Thursday night, fetching nearly $3.5 million, but half of the jewels on offer failed to sell in a market shaken by the financial crisis, Christie's said.

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"People want to buy rarity. They want diamonds and color gemstones that are not easy to replace," said Rahul Kadakia, head of Christie's jewelry department for North America, who conducted part of the sale.

"A lot of diamonds didn't sell. The sale was based on the extreme high demand for jewels last summer," he added.

But vintage jewelry -- especially Cartier Art Deco pieces -- and natural pearls commanded strong prices, he said.

Vintage and signed jewelry and natural pearls went through the roof, even in this market," Kadakia said, pointing to several lots that quadrupled their pre-sale estimate.

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From: news.yahoo.com




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