Pink Star diamond sells for world record $71.2m

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05 April, 2017

Pink diamond of 59.6 carat was sold for $71 million in Honk Kong.

Clocking in at 59.60 carats and with an estimated value of more than $60 million, the Pink Star could become the most expensive diamond ever sold at auction.

The winning bid, which came from the Hong Kong-based jewelry retailer Chow Tai Fook, came after a five-minute bidding war among three potential buyers.

Pink diamonds get their color from a process called plastic deformation, which creates defects in the diamond's atomic structure by rearranging the carbon atoms and altering the way light is absorbed and reflected. The stone was cut and polished over two years by Steinmetz Diamonds and unveiled to the public in 2003 under the title of the "Steinmetz Pink".

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But the buyer later defaulted, so the sale doesn't count.

May 2016: A large diamond known as the Oppenheimer Blue set a new auction record, reaching a price of $50.6m (£34.7m at the exchange rate then current).

In 2013, Isaac Wolf, a diamond cutter in NY, actually tried to buy the special gem for $83 million in Geneva - but he might have overestimated his millions, as he later had to default on the purchase. The auction house tried its luck again in Asia, where it said it has seen rising demand from wealthy buyers. Past year it sold an unspecified stake in the diamond to two companies, diamond specialist Diacore and NY jeweller Mellen Inc.

This isn't its first purchase of the kind; a year ago it bought a green diamond for $17 million at a Christie's auction, and in 2010 the jeweller set a record with its $35 million purchase of a rough diamond from Cullinan Mine.


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