London — The diamond industry has a size problem. Instead of splashing out on a ring or necklace featuring one big, bright diamond, shoppers are increasingly choosing pieces with several, smaller gems, which are often lower quality. And selling jewellery with smaller stones has been a good way for retailers to save money. As a result, the diamond content in jewellery has been shrinking since 2011 back to a level last seen almost a decade ago, creating a headache for miners. It’s part of the reason the jewellery industry has been struggling to grow. The amount spent on diamond jewellery items has stayed at about $80bn a year since 2014, according to De Beers. "Falling diamond content looks likely to continue," says Anish Aggarwal, a partner at industry consultant Gemdax. "It’s possible that even if diamond jewellery demand increases, the underlining diamond demand does not." Less money is being spent on diamonds partly because jewellers are cutting back amid higher overheads and othe...

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