Vol. 1 of the 2015 Scott Standard Postage Stamp Catalogue has been available for purchase for about a month, and I am happy to report that sales have been brisk.
The From the Scott Editors column in the April 21 Linn’s provided a brief summary of the valuing and editing work that was accomplished.
This week, I would like to expand a bit and highlight some additional findings from the Scott editors’ efforts.
If one were to examine Scott catalog value trends that have emerged during the past five years or so, the pattern would look something like this.
Stamps of the classic period are increasing in value, modern stamps from the 1930s through the 1980s or so are showing gentle declines in value, and values for more recent stamps (mid-1990s to the present) are trending upward.
For most countries the editors reviewed, value increases tend to be concentrated among stamps from the classic period of philately. The classic period begins with the world’s first postage stamp, Great Britain’s Penny Black of 1840, and continues through the first decade or so of the 20th century.
Value increases are robust for stamps in true very fine condition, which often can be difficult to locate. For example, the United States 1857 3¢ rose Washington stamps (Scott 25 and 25A) each rise in value unused, a reflection of the challenge finding these stamps in VF condition.
For most modern U.S. postage stamps, values are holding steady. Two noticeable exceptions are the 9¢ Capitol Dome stamps from booklet panes: Scott 1590, from booklet pane No. 1623a and 1590A, from No. 1623Bc.
These stamps are now valued used at $20 and $50, respectively. A new footnote states that values apply only to stamps with contemporaneous cancels.
In modern issues, values are flat or down modestly.
For the Bahamas, the Scott editors recorded more than 900 value changes. Aside from scattered increases among classic-era stamps, values show declines.
In many countries, values begin to rise for stamps issued during the past decade or so, a trend the Scott editors began noticing almost five years ago.
The various surcharged stamps and stamps of Dahomey surcharged for use in Benin increase in value. The surcharged 2008 200-franc-on-250fr Benin Coat of Arms (Scott 1461), rockets from $4.25 mint, never hinged and used in the 2014 catalog, to $60 mint and $35 used in the 2015 edition.
The editors sometimes have difficulty obtaining an accurate picture of the market for certain countries. This was the case for Bolivia in the 2015 Vol. 1.
While some dealer price lists track Scott values for Bolivia rather closely, other sellers’ retail prices are noticeably higher than Scott.
When a mixed picture such as this presents itself, Scott’s practice is to proceed with caution.
As such, just under 200 value changes were made, and these are concentrated almost exclusively among stamps issued during 2007-12.
Publication of the remaining 2015 Scott catalogs will continue through November, when the 2015 Scott Classic Specialized Catalogue of Stamps and Covers 1840-1940 is released.
blogThis month marks my fifth anniversary writing the monthly auction report for Linn’s Stamp News. That’s 60 columns, totaling more than 100,000 words (enough for a decent-sized novel), all about our favorite hobby. Read More ›
blogWhen this cover was listed on eBay in mid-September, it didn't take long for some knowledgeable collectors to recognize this piece of postal history for the gem that it is: an early trans-oceanic survey cover for a Pacific route that included Midway Island, which would become famous as the location of a pivotal 1942 naval battle during World War II. Read More ›
blogIn mid-September I traveled to London, England, to attend Autumn Stampex, one of two British national stamp shows sponsored by the Philatelic Traders’ Society, Great Britain’s national stamp dealers association. The show took place Sept. 16-19 at the Business Design Centre in Islington (central north London), a comfortable and attractive venue for a stamp show. Read More ›
September 28, 2015 03:30 AMAfter the 1906 earthquake in San Francisco, postal workers not only saved the mail, they saved the new post office building. Read More ›
Watch as Linn’s Stamp News senior editor Denise McCarty discusses current events that relate to the stamp hobby, including the relocation of a stamp show in Sweden due to the Syrian refugee crises, and new stamps honoring Pope Francis and the British monarchy.
Watch as Linn’s Stamp News associate editor Michael Baadke talks about a record fifth win for wildlife artist Joseph Hautman in the federal duck stamp art contest, and see the painting that will appear on next year’s federal duck stamp
Watch as Scott catalog senior editor Marty Frankevicz questions Bolivia’s choice for the design of a 2013 stamp honoring the country’s efforts to protect its migrants in foreign lands.
Watch as Linn’s Stamp News managing editor Chad Snee discusses the discovery of the upright Jenny Invert pane received in an order from Stamp Fulfillment Services in Kansas City, Mo., and also reports on the Confederate Stamp Alliance.
It is always a treat to get to see stamp dealers’ own collections.
In the recently concluded Linn’s United States Stamp Popularity Poll, the Circus Posters set of eight stamps was chosen as the overall favorite issue of 2014.
Dispersal of the splendid Daniel B. Curtis collection continued March 25, with Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries gaveling items from United States back-of-the-book and possessions.
The 175th anniversary of the first postage stamp, Great Britain's Penny Black, is May 6, but the stamp was placed on sale May 1, 1840, for mailers to use beginning on May 6, the designated issue date.