Apfelbaum’s Corner – Volume 48

Despite all that has been written about the financially unsound venture of “new issue” collecting, there are still many thousands of people who are going to send their kids through college, retire or make an enormous profit by purchasing sheets of the United States stamps as issues from the Post Office and laying them away for years.

There is nothing wrong with “new issue” collecting, if you derive enjoyment from it. However, consider these facts if you are only interested in profit.

Since 1943 there have been over a thousand varieties issued by our country. At most, a dozen or two of these issues sell for a slight premium over face value. If liquidating today, holders of stamps from this twenty-one year period must usually take a 10%-20% loss from face value, depending on the denominations of their stamps.

If you are really seeking to send your kids through college on stamps, go to a good reliable dealer and buy old stamps in fine condition that have already become scarce and are presently bringing a good price. These stamps show a consistent increase in value year after year. Recent purchases from the U.S. Post Office are never going to become rare or even scarce during your lifetime.

When you must pay $5 for a stamp with a face value of 5 cents, it is already desirable and probably quite limited in supply. With the increase in population, the normal loss of stamps through mishandling and the dispersal of the available supply, you may be sure that the stamp will sell for a higher price each year.