AGTA ePrism
April 22, 2009

Did You Know it’s Sparkle Week?
from New York Magazine
Welcome to Sparkle Week! And this might just be the most awesome, yet tackiest, stunt ever. It's a first for this city, and it's not a joke. Mayor Bloomberg officially proclaimed Sparkle Week last month as an effort to boost the jewelry economy, which has been hit hard by the recession. More

Business Survey Shows Recession is Abating
from CNN Money
A key survey of leading businesses shows that the nation's economy remained weak in the first quarter, but it also hinted that the decline is slowing. The National Association of Business Economics' April Industry Survey "provides fresh evidence that the U.S. economy's recession is abating," said Sara Johnson, an analyst on the survey and an economist at IHS Global Insight. More

Kazanjian Red Diamond Returns to L.A. Natural History Museum
from Rapaport
The Kazanjian Red diamond will be on display at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County through May 29, 2009. The rare diamond was found in South Africa, probably in 1927. During World War II, it was stolen in Arnhem during the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands, and hidden in a salt mine with other looted treasures. When it was recovered it was initially mistaken for a ruby. More

Bidz.com Sells Colibri Bankruptcy Auction to Richline Group
from IDEX
Online jewelry retailer Bidz.com sold all the intellectual property, trademarks and tools that it acquired in the bankruptcy auction of the Colibri Group to Richline Group, Inc., wholly-owned subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. The sold assets are of Krementz, Van Dell, Shiman, Dolan & Bullock, Taylor Avedon, Angelite, Skal, Skalet, Magical Years, Little Miss Pride, Sideways, Darling Diamonds, Fingerprint Locket and others. Bidz.com also agreed in principle to buy future close-outs from Richline on a non-exclusive basis, the company said. More

World’s Biggest Diamond Mine Cuts Output
from The Times of the Internet
Botswana, the world's largest diamond mine producer, says it will cut output by more than half this year because of low gem demand. Debswana, the company jointly owned by the Botswana government and De Beers, plans to produce 15 million carats of diamonds this year, compared to 33.6 million carats in 2008, the BBC said. More

A Promising Sign for Small Business Loans
from BusinessWeek
It seems that the secondary market for Small Business Administration-backed loans may actually be thawing out a bit. Banks that make SBA-backed loans have historically been able to sell the guaranteed portion of these loans into the secondary market, freeing up their balance sheets to make new loans. The lack of liquidity in the secondary market is one of many factors that has been blamed for banks’ reluctance to lend to small businesses during this economic crisis. More

Watch Orders at Luxury Fair Fall
from Business World Online
Demand for timepieces fell 15 percent at this year’s Baselworld watch and jewelry fair as the gloomy economic outlook made retailers take a cautious approach to stocking up on luxury accessories. "Last year, many people were ordering to make sure they could get the merchandise and were ordering more than they needed," said president of the Swiss Exhibitors’ Committee Francois Thiebaud. Rima Farah of Swissdiam, a Geneva-based coloured diamond specialist, said diamond prices in general had fallen in recent months though the price of colored diamonds, especially rare blue ones, had proved much more resilient. More

Selfridges Very Yellow Centennial
from Luxist
English store Selfridges is pulling out all the stops to celebrate its 100 birthday. And the iconic department store has hit a bit of luck, its signature color, the bright canary yellow Pantone 109 just happens to be one of the hot colors for spring. More