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 Post subject: What Credit Crunch?
PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 6:30 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 10, 2008 1:28 pm
Posts: 21
What Credit Crunch? This refers to the doom and gloom that is promoted every time you hear media speak from the television or radio, in newspapers and from just every source you can think of. Their cups are certainly not half full but half empty.

Not that there are not problems in the worlds banking systems and tragically this is going to hurt, and has already started to hurt, a lot of innocent people. The workers who lose their jobs and what that can mean to them and their families is particulary unpleasant.

Not claiming to be an expert in anything I will refrain from further comment on the problems of the world economies and the effects they are having. I would like to comment on some thing I know a bit more about and that is the philatelic market. This is purely a personal view, partly in response to giving Nick Hackney one of his Christmas wishes that we would all put something on the web site!

Has the economy moving in to recession affected the London philatelic auction market and on a wider note the world market? The short answer is a resounding NO.

Recent auctions around the world but more particularly London have shown that the market has largely been unaffected. Good material in good condition = quality. Quality sells and quality is still expensive. Junk also sells at good prices and it is only things that are not actually all that rare but deemed valuable, or things that are not in such good condition that have perhaps slipped a bit. That the market remains good and wholesome is especially true in the Commonwealth market and Malaya is firmly in that.

For example, a Kedah Malay Ploughing frame proof in a recent Spink sale realised £1200 hammer which plus the premium means roughly £1,500. Curses, have to up the Insurance cover again! Grosvenor had a a two day sale with a chunk of Malaya in it recently and out of my six bids I got one. Perhaps I am getting mean in my old age but there were also two collections of material that had been held for a long time and the hunger of the market for that sort of material, good things rarely seen and even rarer on the market, led to exceptional prices. Some of the material from these Rhodesia and Falkland Islands collections fetched prices that no dealer would ever dream possible but collectors do funny things when bidding against friends (using the word losely) for items long coveted.

The only area that has been affected has been some big ticket G.B. items and there have been some unsolds in specialised auctions - but then that was previously the hot spot in the market for the last few years and prices had climbed quite steeply in a relatively short time. A lot of these things were no doubt destined for the investment market and everything is only worth what others will pay for it. The safe level is what collectors will pay - prices can go above that when investment money is about, e.g. City bonuses, but when they disappear (I think they have!) then prices fall back to the steadier collectors market price.

Returning to Grosvenor, they recently had a two day sale of G.B. that followed a week after their other sale and one of the Directors told me that although there were a few 'soft' areas overall the sale went well. I understand they sold about 70% of the lots and this included a wide mix from line engraved to the third part of a huge collection of modern errors.

So the end of the philatelic world is not nigh!

This is quite typical of the philatelic market and has happened before when there has been a recession. Of course some people drop out of the market because they have lost, or are worried about losing their jobs, etc., and have mortgages, families to look after. Others though move in to the market. People on fixed incomes with disposable sums to spend switch from the stock markets, bank accounts bearing interest, etc., to buying stamps and or other collectables. Thus they and others fill the gaps and the market moves seamlessly on.

So despite the doom and gloom merchants called reporters or media staff who emphasise only the worst of the days news and ignore the fact that everything is actually carrying on fine in the majority of our lives there is certainly no need to panic.

The slump of sterling against world currencies, including the U.S. dollar (where the problem started!! What justice is there?) does cause practical problems if a regular bidder overseas but usually it is only if sterling becomes really strong that it affects the philatelic market adversely.

So Carry on Collecting - (Do impersonation of a Sid James laugh/or a Babs Windsor giggle if your prefer!)

Best wishes


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 Post subject: Re: What Credit Crunch?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:45 am 
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Joined: Fri May 09, 2008 1:18 pm
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Thanks Andrew. I think we should ask you to make this a regular column, say every two months?


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 Post subject: Re: What Credit Crunch?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 1:40 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2008 5:49 pm
Posts: 113
MSG AUCTION on 21st March, sold about 90% of the lots ( according to my contact who was there ) and many prices well above the start points, so good prices and MSG members willing to spend


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 Post subject: Re: What Credit Crunch?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 3:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 7:34 pm
Posts: 121
I was at the auction, ebayer should try being at one, much more fun than postal bidding.
What is apparent is that modern material is selling well at every auction, a few years ago there was an embargo on Agro's being put into the auction!
Times they are a changing... :D :D

_________________
Regards,
Mac McClaren


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 Post subject: Re: What Credit Crunch?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 7:14 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 07, 2008 11:26 am
Posts: 293
Mac
they weren't embargoed ; I just got fed up of typing out pages and pages and pages of lots with complex compound perfs on each stamp, which then didn't sell ! partly because they were over priced.

a more sensible start point, and a few more years 'age' on the lots and now they sell. I didn't notice descriptionss 'perf 14 3/4 x 13 3/4 blue gum' on saturday just more general, sensible descriptions.

it is good to see them selling, it is good to see 90% sales as ebayer noted from an un-named source. I too was at the auction - sat behind you remember ! and it seemed to be good sales all round, so the auction is healthy

regards Susan


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 Post subject: Re: What Credit Crunch?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 29, 2009 11:32 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:00 pm
Posts: 42
As a new member who has bid for the first time at the recent auction could somebody advise roughly when to "give up hope" of having won any lots based on likely last posting date.

I do understand that the auction is a volunteer run matter but at some stage the realisations have to be typed for publication so could this be put on the web site at an early date, which would be of use to those postal bidders who have both won and lost.


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 Post subject: Re: What Credit Crunch?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 29, 2009 6:20 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 07, 2008 11:26 am
Posts: 293
as a retired ex-auctioneer for MSG i can say that your understanding of the work being voluntary and therby fitted in around commitments such as WORK, is appreciated. I used to try to despatch most within 1 week and all within 2 weeks. Not sure if Roger can always manage that.

I therefore suggest that if nothing is heard 3 weeks + post transit time to wherever you are ( say 2 days UK, 1 week Singapore ) then a polite email enquiry to Roger about your bids is OK.

There used to be an MSG member, sadly now deceased, who used to phone me on the Sunday morning, after a Saturday auction, to enquire about his results. This was usually before I had managed to reconcile the accounts. :roll:

if you are really desparate email the lot numbers to Nick and ask him to forward to me, I noted most of the results ( except a dozen or so when I went for Coffee )


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