Ingle and Rhode, a UK ethical jeweller, has forecasted lower sales for both wedding rings and engagement rings at the end of the year as the Omicron variant adds “further uncertainty”.
While the figures are still being compiled, Ingle and Rhode has found “slightly lower sales” for both wedding rings and engagement rings over the last two months of the year, as the Omicron variant appeared.
During winter last year, the jeweller saw wedding rings sales up 3% on the previous five years during this period, following the end of the second lockdown in December.
However, the sales dropped again at the end of the third lockdown in February 2021, which the jeweller said was “lower than usual” compared to the same months between 2015 and 2019.
Meanwhile, following the abolishment of restrictions on weddings in June this year, Ingle and Rhode saw its sales grow alongside people’s general confidence, with sales reaching a high of 17% for engagement rings and wedding rings. It also achieved its highest recorded monthly sales in July at 19% due to ‘Freedom Day’.
Additionally, Ingle and Rhode’s sales of engagement and wedding rings almost doubled in August to October last year compared to the average from 2015-19.
A spokesperson for Ingle and Rhode said: “What we have seen so far is when the country ‘unlocks’ from a lockdown, we experience a big bounce. During lockdowns people deferred their spending, so over the course of the last 12 months we have experienced our best year.
“There is a noticeable lag between ‘unlocking’ and sales because most of our jewellery is made to order so there is often a lead time of one to two months between someone making an enquiry, placing an order and receiving their finished ring.”
They added: “With the current Omicron variant, it is impossible to predict what 2022 holds in terms of future demand for wedding and engagement rings.”