Monthly Archives: January 2011


Recent emerald sales have set new record prices for fine emeralds, for both cut stones and specimens. The old record for a fine cut emerald $40,000 per carat. In late 2010, Muzo International, Inc. sold a 9 carat emerald cut stone for almost $90,000 per carat – more than doubling the previous best price.

Recognition of the Rarity of Fine Emeralds

This 9.27 carat emerald sold in 2010 for over $800,000.

This record-setting sale demonstrates a new recognition of the rarity and value of a very fine emerald with a spectacular combination of color and transparency. It also reveals a new class of buyers. Big money has discovered the undervalued and collectible attraction of fine gems, mainly because the stock market and real estate no longer offer the returns they once did. Fine world class mineral specimens have also become attractions for the wealthy collector. New money and money displaced from traditional investments is coming into the gem and mineral world, affecting prices from top to bottom, ushering in a new era of stratospheric emerald prices.

Mineral Specimens Have Also Broken Barriers

The fabulous “Yamile” emerald specimen has sold three times in the last ten years. In 1984 it was sold by the mine owner for $80,000. The collector who bought it held it until 2007, and sold it for over $250,000 (that’s a tidy little profit of $170,000). This collector sold it again in 2010 for $500,000, doubling his money in 3 years.

These 2 photos of the Yamile emerald were taken 26 years apart. The photo on the left was taken in 1984, the one on the right in 2010.

Top Ten Questions About Mineral Collecting – #10

Every mineral collector has questions, from the beginner to the most experienced.  By searching for answers, our knowledge increases, and our interest expands.  Here is a list of the ten most commonly asked questions about mineral collecting – with some helpful answers.

  1. What is a mineral?
  2. Why do people collect mineral specimens?
  3. How do I find mineral specimens?
  4. What minerals should I collect?
  5. Where can I learn more about minerals?
  6. How can I identify the minerals that I’ve found?
  7. Is this hobby expensive?
  8. What is my specimen worth?
  9. How should I display my specimens?
  10. How should I organize my collection?

Today we’re tackling question #10.  You can read the blog entries addressing previous questions by following the links above.

10.  How should I organize my collection?

Every mineral collector knows they should do this, but many just never get around to it.  Even if you can remember what a specimen is and where it came from now, will you still be able to remember in a few decades?  And what will happen to your collection when you die if it isn’t organized?  Doing this doesn’t have to be complicated:

  • Catalog each specimen.
  • Mark it with a number that corresponds to your record of what it is, where it came from, where it is stored, and the date found (there are lots of software programs available online for organizing your collection).
  • Make a written label to go with each specimen as well.

Tip: start doing this early on when you’re just starting your collection.  If you wait until you have several thousand specimens, you’ll probably never do it!