A new report on Americans’ spending habits on luxury items and jewelry during the first fiscal quarter of 2017 has found that overall, the average spending on engagement rings totaled $3,406, a mere dollar short of what couples spent on diamond rings in the corresponding period in 2016.
The Wedding Report noted that in Q1 2017, the average cost of weddings in the U.S. was $25,960, a 2.8% drop from $26,720 the year before, citing “falling demand for services like transportation, entertainment, and beauty.” Couples, the report said, “Seem to be looking for alternatives or other options, rather than the traditional route, for these services.”
The report found that individually, couples spent an average of $786 on wedding rings for the bride – a dollar short of the $785 spent on bridal wedding rings in 2016. The average spending on men’s wedding bands remained unchanged, at $456.
The Wedding Report’s data on couples’ average spending on jewelry for their nuptials was based on some 3,400 survey samples collected between January 1 and March 31, 2017, the report noted.
With vintage-style engagement rings dominating women’s preferences in 2016 and early 2017, classic round-cut diamonds remained the couples’ evergreen choice. Other fan favorites were the princess cut, the cushion cut, and the Asscher cut diamonds.
Surprisingly, the classic emerald-cut diamond was the least popular among couples searching for an engagement ring during the surveyed period of time. Some 38.3% of couples said they would “avoid” emerald-cut diamonds; 26.7% said they “love” emerald-cut diamonds and gems, and 5.8% said it would be too hard to pair it with a wedding band.
Despite this slight decline in overall spending on engagement and wedding rings, one must remember that demand for diamonds in the United States, which now accounts for more than half of the world’s diamond consumption, rose by 4.4% to a record $41 billion in 2016.