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Many of us inherit jewellery from family members, or receive jewellery as gifts from friends and loved ones, but how many of us are aware of its true value? In the unfortunate event that our valuables are lost or stolen, we rely on our good old reliable insurance company to cover the cost of the replacement; however recent rises in gold and diamond prices mean that many of us are underinsured without even knowing it.

Gold prices have been rising steadily over the last few years, and in the last few months we have seen them reach an all time high.

Loss Management Group deal with over 60,000 jewellery claims a year, which come in to us from many of the major insurance companies. Of these we have found 36% of policyholders are underinsured. This is a frightening statistic considering how many of us it may affect.

This simple graph clearly shows the price of gold over the last four years. In 2007 it was on average £314 per ounce. In August this year it reached on average £1100 per gram. This equates to an increase of over 250%.

The increase in diamond and gemstone prices is much harder to quantify, and is mainly dependant on demand for particular sizes and qualities of diamonds. We recently discussed the issue with Harry Levy, President of the London Diamond Bourse. In his expert opinion diamond prices have risen by 35% over the last year alone.

If you have had your jewellery for some time, it is now highly recommended you have it professionally valued. Gold, diamonds and gem stones are at record levels and the chances of underinsurance are simply too high to put it off any longer. An average 20 gram 9ct chain purchased in the United Kingdom in January 2001 would have cost £200; the same chain today would cost £900 this represents an increase of 450%.

If you are unsure where to go to have your jewellery valued or would like some advice, a good starting place would be to visit the website of The Guild of Valuers and Jewellers at www.gvj.org.uk. They work closely with the National Association of Goldsmiths. You can also visit their website www.jewellers-online.org.

We understand it is very difficult to ask how much someone paid for your special gift or even your engagement ring, and some of us would never think of asking that question at all, but if the unthinkable did happen, you would be safe in the knowledge that your insurance would not fall short of the replacement of that precious and cherished item.

Stephen Kopaloff
LMG Jewellery Manager
Tel 01225 788554
s.kopaloff@lossmanagement.co.uk

www.lossmanagement.co.uk

LMG
Bath & West Buildings
Lower Bristol, Bath BA2 3EG

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