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Are AGS0 princess cuts more expensive....

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Bunnifer

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...now that AGS has introduced its princess grading system? IOW, are AGS0 princesses more expensive than, say, a GIA princess with about the same specs but without the grading system? Since AGS has effectively taken the headache out of finding a well cut princess, will vendors price them above other well cut princesses because of this?

I''d love to hear what the experts (and non-experts!) think about this...
 

Regular Guy

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Date: 12/28/2006 9:41:35 PM
Author: zhuzhu
yes.
Agreed. Pricescope's Moderator I think recently noted an approx 10% premium, however, that may have only been across the board, so it may be higher for princesses. And...for the reasons you describe, there's be a rationale for this.

Running the numbers in a simple way, comparing on both the Search by cut db and in house db here under "Prices" above, you can see this pattern, when otherwise accepting the given defaults...

AGS
in house range 5179 - 6185 sbc range (more to compare) 4147 - 8678
GIA
in house 4200 - 5998 SBC 3670 - 7324 (if remove the one 1.5 outlier)

If you run "search all," you get too few hits to compare (for AGS), but anyway, the above effectively tells the tale.
 

Wink

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It costs more money and looses more rough to cut a stone properly to maximize light return and beauty versus weight retention and lower cost per carat, so yes, a stone that has been cut to AGS 0 proportions, light return, polish and symmetry will cost more than a stone that is similar but may not quite make the grade standards.


Wink
 

niceice

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AGS graded princess cut diamonds to cost more... We''re told by the cutters that production costs are higher and the loss of diamond rough is greater to produce a princess cut diamond that meets the AGS standards for the zero ideal cut rating. The fact that the AGS takes the visual performance of the diamonds into account is a definite plus! The GIA currently only takes polish, symmetry and proportions into account.
 

Paul-Antwerp

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Date: 12/28/2006 9:31:03 PM
Author:Bunnifer
...now that AGS has introduced its princess grading system? IOW, are AGS0 princesses more expensive than, say, a GIA princess with about the same specs but without the grading system? Since AGS has effectively taken the headache out of finding a well cut princess, will vendors price them above other well cut princesses because of this?

I''d love to hear what the experts (and non-experts!) think about this...
As Wink and Todd, Ira and Zhuzhu already replied, the simple answer to your question is yes. But I think that it is a very qualified yes.

First, your question is whether there is a higher price compared to a GIA-graded princess with the same specs. Well, there basically are no non-AGS-graded princess-cuts with the same specs. When AGS introduced its grading system, they put us on another planet, in an area of cutting with specific proportion-sets, that were absolutely unknown to traditional cutters of princess-cuts. Therefore, the chance of a GIA-graded princess-cut actually being able to get an AGS-0-grade is close to zero, and an absolute winner in a huge lottery.

Actually, before AGS started its system, they apparently did a small study on the princess-cuts then available on the market, and they found that about 50% of them would get a cut-grade of AGS-5 or lower, and only a very small part scoring AGS-2 or better. In rounds, there is a clear price-difference between AGS-0 and AGS-2, and it is natural that you will find the same in princess-cuts, even more so, considering that a high number are actually AGS-5 or lower.

Another thing to consider is the difference in grading of GIA and AGS, especially in clarity. AGS is known to be a tad stricter here, and this is also one of the reasons why, in rounds, AGS-graded stones are slightly more expensive than GIA-graded stones. In this way, an AGS-stone VS2 might seem more expensive than a GIA VS2, but sometimes, this VS2 might be a VS1 with GIA, and in that case, it is probably cheaper, based upon the AGS-report, in stead of more expensive.

Finally, of course, cutting to AGS-specs implies more weight loss, and this translates into higher pricing. But since it also means going from say AGS-4-quality to AGS-0, the price difference is also visibly defendible.

Live long,
 

kenny

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I doubt 100% of the premium is for lost rough.
There must be a premium tacked on for the prestigious AGS 0 cut grade. (You know, whatever the market will bear, and all that.)

I'm not saying this is wrong, but nobody has mentioned it.

Oh and anyone want to give a ballpark figure of what the AGS 0 retail premium is - all other things being equal?
10% more?
20% ?
30% ?
 

Bunnifer

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VERY interesting...esp. Paul''s opinion. Paul, would it be accurate then to say that AGS0 princesses are in a class by themselves? Since GIA does not (as yet) evaluate light performance, what would be comparable stats for a GIA princess (if any)? Is this like comparing apples and oranges or just Granny Smiths and Red Deliciouses?

Also, any takers on Kenny''s question re: AGS retail markup?
 

oldminer

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The real question, as yet not fully answered by the market, is, "Are AGS 0 Princess cuts worth more than the other styles of well cut princess cuts?"

There may be physical reasons why a stone costs more per carat to to its cutting style , ie: weight loss. However, does this compute to greater ''value"? Not really.

As far as what retailers mark-up diamonds, one must understand the circumstances. A retailer who is hot to compete will settle for far less than a retailer who says their service and relationships are worth a lot and you can simply choose to buy or not. There are no rules for mark-up in any environment. Once a retailer knows they have an informed customer who is ready to spend money, they can make up their minds how to adjust any price. A big problem is that some retailers truthfully are not buying well and cannot possibly compete at the very lowest price levels. They would be selling below their cost.
 

kenny

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Oldminer wrote, "There may be physical reasons why a stone costs more per carat to to its cutting style , ie: weight loss. However, does this compute to greater 'value"? Not really."

I disaree.
The market decides this.
Perception has value to many customers, just ask Tiffany.

It may take time but if these new AGS 0 Princesses are flying off the vendor's shelves at current prices then prices will rise.
If they move slowly for long enough then prices will eventuall fall.

An equalibrium will be reached.

Personally I suspect, as with every new and exciting product, they are priced high now.
Why?
Because they can.
It is just smart business.

So we are still waiting for a vendor to tell us: How much premium does an AGS 0-cut princess get over a GIA with equal specs?
 

Regular Guy

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Globally, I'm sympathetic with Kenny's response....(edited to add...his turn of the phrase...the market will decide...seems borrowed from your lexicon, Dave).

Dave, I find your response strange. Just to make an analogy that may or may not pay off (especially since I don't think you're familiar with the way they're displayed here)...

On this site, the Price Stats set prices that follow a trend, following the charts you created. See it here, for one carat. See how the pricing is higher for H&A. The analogy is frail because certs do not include this quality. But...in common, the H&A quality is a perceived benefit, sought after, acknowledged by this format (at least) of your charts, and it's a feature you haven't expressed much belief in. Yet, their value is higher.

What do you think of round H&A's being valued higher?
 

Paul-Antwerp

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Date: 1/2/2007 12:05:19 PM
Author: kenny

Personally I suspect, as with every new and exciting product, they are priced high now.
Why?
Because they can.
It is just smart business.
How about the strategy of pricing them so competitively, that other manufacturers do not see the benefit of learning how to do it?
 

kenny

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Regular Guy

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Date: 1/2/2007 4:31:29 PM
Author: kenny


Just a ballpark number would be fine.

Apparently you didn''t like my analysis above, so hopefully someone else will answer this...but bringing the numbers forward, I cipher it''s 14%. Just as a ballpark.
 

Garry H (Cut Nut)

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Personally I am an oportunistic buyer of diamonds that should qualify for AGS 0 light performance.

I think their standard for sym and polish is dumb as square rough is harder to get a top polish on because of the crystal structure and hardness issues.

But AGS and some other labs (eg IGI) have done a lot to improve princess cut appearance by working with cutters to help develop more good proportion ranges that do work and highlighting those that do not.

But more than anything - Al Glibertsons scope and the AGS simplified ASET version make it much easier for me to select the best of the best. But it is hard work - and as we know few jewellers and dealers will even spend the time and effort to select the best rounds with an ideal-scope - let alone learn the more complex selection process based on AGS''s work that I have made accessable to anoyne who wants it via the IS website.

I congratulate Paul and the other cutters i know who have gone after the AGS 0 grade for princess - because they raise the bar, and Paul is right - it is a niche that many will not spend the time and effort to achieve.

As for Dave''s argument - yes it is a value issue, and the buyers establish the ''value''.

For most pricescope type buyers AGS 0 or AGS 1-2 makes a lot of sense.
But not all AGS 0 princess cuts have ''turned me on''.

I think until they can get a handle on scintillation the system is NQR - but it is still the best of any lab out there so far
 

kenny

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Thanks John.
Good answer, it is just to complex to state simply.
 

strmrdr

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too add another mud ball in the water...
take an AGS0 diamond send it to GIA gets same color and clarity grade some vendors could on the strength of the supporting information get the same amount either way where another vendor might never get as much with the GIA paper and one may get more with the gia paper in their market.
So the premium could be zero , 10% or even -10% all on the exact same diamond depending on who the seller and buyer are.
 

Bunnifer

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Date: 1/2/2007 5:49:22 PM
Author: kenny
Thanks John.

Good answer, it is just to complex to state simply.
Ditto what Kenny said. Once again, your succint clarity has demystified at least *some* of the mystery surrounding diamond pricing.
 

kenny

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Indeed, I'd like to nominate John Pollard for the 2007 Pricescope Clarity Award.

John's posts get a clarity grade of Flawless!
 

JohnQuixote

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Date: 1/2/2007 5:59:25 PM
Author: Bunnifer

Ditto what Kenny said. Once again, your succint clarity has demystified at least *some* of the mystery surrounding diamond pricing.
Thank you Bunnifer, but I was only tying together valuable background info Paul and the others provided. I'm like the last guy in the relay race.

Kenny - I don't know about Flawless, but my head has Excellent polish. Don't make it any bigger.
 

Garry H (Cut Nut)

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Date: 1/2/2007 6:07:02 PM
Author: kenny
Indeed, I''d like to nominate John Pollard for the 2007 Pricescope Clarity Award.

John''s posts get a clarity grade of Flawless!
Hmmm, let me think about that one??????

SI is the lowest clarity grade below which flaws may start to affect beauty.

And knowing him off line as i do, i can assure you there is enough deviant behaviour and traits to assure you he has some flaws of character that make hem a great character.

is that clear?

(he is of course of good character
)
 

oldminer

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Quote:
For most pricescope type buyers AGS 0 or AGS 1-2 makes a lot of sense.
But not all AGS 0 princess cuts have ''turned me on''.

I think this is where I am at the present time in regards to AGS 0 princess cuts. Truthfully, I have not seen a single AGS 1 or AGS 2 so far, but only a few AGS 0 stones which varied somewhat in appearance from one another, but all looked lovely on their own.

The VALUE question I was raising has to do with my yet unresolved assumption that many AGS 1 and AGS 2 princess cuts will also be super looking and not really deficient stones. Will AGS be able to make the market accept its grading or will both trained and untrained eyes disagree on some stones? Value arises primarily from a consensus, not from opposing viewpoints. Paul knows the basis of COST as he buys the rough and works the stones into fine examples. Probably the same can be said for those doing similar work for Whiteflash. The amount of weight retained after cutting is a COST consideration. The extra amount of labor taken to get AGS 0 is another cost consideration. These things are reasonably sure to make the COST higher than some alternative cutting styles that are less demanding. HOWEVER, the VALUE the market finds in these stones is, to a great extent, determined by market forces and NOT BY COST.

I believe higher labor content, higher quality of workmanship, and greater beauty do lead to higher VALUE. Will there be enough consumers willing to go an extra bit more money for fine quality? We''ll all see.
 

kenny

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Date: 1/2/2007 6:36:54 PM
Author: Garry H (Cut Nut)
Date: 1/2/2007 6:07:02 PM

Author: kenny

Indeed, I'd like to nominate John Pollard for the 2007 Pricescope Clarity Award.


John's posts get a clarity grade of Flawless!
Hmmm, let me think about that one??????


SI is the lowest clarity grade below which flaws may start to affect beauty.


And knowing him off line as i do, i can assure you there is enough deviant behaviour and traits to assure you he has some flaws of character that make hem a great character.


is that clear?


(he is of course of good character
)
You don't suppose John has feathers around his girdle, do you?
His goatee looks like the start of bearding.

Besides, I didn't say WHICH lab that FL grade came from!


Just don't tell his lady that he has been CE with all of those those laser treatments.
She might not know, and realize she overpaid.

Oh, and tell her not to clean him with any of those strong solvents or the filling can come out of his fractures.

 

Garry H (Cut Nut)

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Date: 1/2/2007 7:16:24 PM
Author: oldminer
Quote:
For most pricescope type buyers AGS 0 or AGS 1-2 makes a lot of sense.
But not all AGS 0 princess cuts have ''turned me on''.

I think this is where I am at the present time in regards to AGS 0 princess cuts. Truthfully, I have not seen a single AGS 1 or AGS 2 so far, but only a few AGS 0 stones which varied somewhat in appearance from one another, but all looked lovely on their own.

The VALUE question I was raising has to do with my yet unresolved assumption that many AGS 1 and AGS 2 princess cuts will also be super looking and not really deficient stones. Will AGS be able to make the market accept its grading or will both trained and untrained eyes disagree on some stones? Value arises primarily from a consensus, not from opposing viewpoints. Paul knows the basis of COST as he buys the rough and works the stones into fine examples. Probably the same can be said for those doing similar work for Whiteflash. The amount of weight retained after cutting is a COST consideration. The extra amount of labor taken to get AGS 0 is another cost consideration. These things are reasonably sure to make the COST higher than some alternative cutting styles that are less demanding. HOWEVER, the VALUE the market finds in these stones is, to a great extent, determined by market forces and NOT BY COST.

I believe higher labor content, higher quality of workmanship, and greater beauty do lead to higher VALUE. Will there be enough consumers willing to go an extra bit more money for fine quality? We''ll all see.
Well said Dave
 
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