Volume 89, October 2002

 
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So Many New Issues, So Many Varieties

In the year 2002, we were blessed with two rate changes. In January the rate went to 34 cents and in July to 37 cents for a first class one ounce letter. As a result, there were an unusually large number of regular issue stamps. For the most part, the same designs were issued panes, coils, booklet panes, some non denominated, some with denominations, water activated, and self adhesive. This deluge of new issues has created havoc among collectors.

For dealers, there are two problems, first the immense inventory of similar stamps to stock, and second trying to identify the stamp that customers REALLY want. For collectors, there is the matter of filling all those spaces in their albums with similar stamps, many don't even want.

For us, we also endeavor to call to the attention of collectors the stamps which have the greatest potential to increase in value. With that thought in mind, we are presenting the following information which we think will be helpful to investors and collectors.

We have identified two significant factors which have impacted appreciation of previously issued regular issue stamps. It appears to us that many recently issued stamps, without printed denominations have increased in value far faster than the denominated issues of the same stamp. Our explanation for that fact is that non denominated issues are generally not reprinted. Once they are sold out, they are no longer available, while denominated stamps are regularly re-issued Two recent issues to illustrate this fact would be the non denominated Four Flowers coil (Scott 3462-5) and the non denominated Statue of Liberty booklet pane of twenty stamps (Scott 3451a) . Both already sell at premium prices.

Secondly, there is the matter of the plate blocks that are issued as panes of 100 stamps only. This group contains such notable stamps as the black "G" plate block (Scott 2881) and the 33 cent Flag and City (Scott 3277). Both have had fantastic increases in value in a very short time.

With regard to the current group of such stamps, we suggest that everyone try to acquire the following issues for their collections: The 34 cent non denominated Farm Flag, (Scott 3448), the 21 cent water activated Bison (Scott 3467) , the 23 cent George Washington (Scott 3616) and the 37 cent non denominated Flag (Scott 3620).

2003 Scott Specialized Catalogue

The new Scott Specialized Catalogue has just been issued. As we expected, it contains many substantial increases in nearly every area. Of course, the largest increases by dollar amount will be found among the higher priced early issues

For example, plate block prices of the Pilgram Tercentary
Issue (Scott Nos. 548-550) have increased by more than
$35.00, the regular issue plate blocks between Scott Nos.
551 and 573 over $475.00, regular issues between Scott
Nos. 581 and 591 over $100.00, and the Huguenot-Walloons
(Scott Nos. 614-616) by over $30.00.

Percentage wise, there are a substantial number of increased prices throuhout the catalogue, including many common three, four, and five cent issues.

Of special note to us, because we have been recommending
their purchase for sometime now, you will find the price
of Scott No. 697 up $7.50, Scott No. 3277 rising from
$2.60 to $12.50, and Scott No. C132 up from $15.00 to $25.00

Despite the state of the economy, despite the falling prices on Wall street, stamp prices are escalating, especially among twentieth century stamps.