Thursday, February 11, 2010

Stamp Investment Tip: Egypt 1922 2pi Orange Postage Due (Scott #J26-26a)

Sometimes, among the best stamps in which to invest are the obscure, plain-looking back-of-book issues which collectors initially ignore. Such is the case with the unassuming little postage due which I am touting to all of you stampselectors today.

In 1922, Egypt overprinted some of its 1889 2pi Orange Postage Due stamps to celebrate the Proclamation of the Monarchy of King Fuad (Scott #J26, J26a). 26,000 of the normal, "overprint left side up" stamps, and 8,000 of the "overprint right side up" variety were issued. Scott '10 values the normal unused stamp at $ 5.00 and the variety at $ 25.00. In all probability, at least 70%-90% of these stamps were used and discarded, leaving perhaps 2,600 to 7,800 of the normal stamp and 800-2,400 of the variety remaining.

Generally, when scarce yet boring back-of-book stamps are overlooked, they remain undervalued for a time, until collectors realize that they have to fill spaces in their albums, but can't find the stamps. As prices rise, they don't seem quite as boring anymore. I think this may prove doubly true for such stamps when they come from countries with rapidly developing economies and growing populations of stamp collectors.

With an estimated 76 million people, Egypt possesses one of the most developed economies in the Mid-East, with a GDP growth rate of 5% -7%. The government is undertaking major economic reforms to further spur development, including massive investments in infrastructure and liberalizing economic and tax policies to encourage foreign investment. Egypt's main challenge in the years to come will be one of social and political democratization - how to assure that enough of the new wealth trickles down to the majority of the population to lessen the problems of poverty and political instability.

Note: you may run into a cover bearing either the normal stamp or the variety at a very reasonable price while flipping through a dealer's bargain box. Be sure to maintain a poker face as you buy it from him.


EDUARDO said...

A collection of all the countries or colonies, BY SCOTT CATALOG 2008, has some economic value.

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