Sunday, September 5, 2010

Stamp Investment Tip: Estonia 1936 Arms Issue (Scott #B28-31)

From 1936 through 1940, Estonia issued five semi-postal sets picturing the coats of arms of its major cities. All are worthy of consideration as investments. The first set (Scott #B28-31) had the lowest printing quantity of the five - 19,424, and Scott '10 values it unused at $27.50 ($47.50 for NH) .

There are many items of the Baltic States which I consider grossly undervalued that should do well now that these nations are no longer under the Soviet thumb, and are open for business. Their citizens are strongly nationalistic, well-educated, and industrious, and it is likely that each of these countries will develop a base of stamp collectors which is on par with Scandinavia, in terms of proportion of the total population. Demand is additionally enhanced by the tendency of many stamp collectors to collect the Baltic States generally, rather than focusing on the individual countries. Furthermore, the issuance of new stamps by these newly resurrected countries should bolster interest in the older issues.

Estonia is a nation of about 1.3 million which was once described as a "Baltic Tiger" due to its rapid economic growth. Since re-establishing independence, Estonia has styled itself as the gateway between East and West and aggressively pursued economic reform. Oil, telecommunications, textiles, chemical products, banking, services, agriculture, fishing, timber, shipbuilding, electronics, and transportation are key sectors of the economy. Annual GDP growth has averaged about 2% over the last 5 years, but this reflects contractions of 4% in 2009 and 14% in 2010, partly due to the global financial crisis.

Those interested in joining a community of stamp investors, dealers, and collectors are welcome to join the "Stampselectors" group at Facebook. The group provides a useful venue for those who wish to buy, sell, and trade stamps, and discuss philatelic investing and practical aspects of stamp collecting.


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