The last process in this commodity chain is when the diamond jewelry reaches the retail market for purchase by the general public. The majority of consumers in the U.S. purchase diamond jewelry for the purpose of proposing to someone that they would like to marry and that is typically in the form of a diamond engagement ring. There are other occasions that these items are bought as presents though, as can be seen in the graph below. The cost of some diamond jewelry has reached into the millions range for the high end.
There are three main countries that are responsible for 60% of the total retail consumption of diamond and only 30% of diamonds mined are used for retail. The U.S. makes up 40% of the total consumption. Even though the U.S. market faced financial hardships in 2011, diamond jewelry made up 1.7% of the country’s total GDP. In recent years, China and India’s economy has improved and that seen a rise in their purchasing power of “luxury items”. That puts these two countries behind the U.S. in retail spending on diamond jewelry.