Friday, January 22, 2010
In 1946-47, Australia issued a set of stamps for its military forces occupying Japan (Scott #M1-7), by overprinting seven values of its 1937-46 Issue for use by the British Commonwealth Occupation Force. Only 32,508 sets were issued, and Scott '10 prices the unused set at $ 185.- .
This set is interesting from an investment perspective, because it appeals to collectors of Australia, British Commonwealth, and also possibly Japan. Unfortunately, forged "B.C.O.F." overprints of the two high values exist, presenting an expertization cost problem, which may be coped with in one of four ways.
1 - Buy blocks of 4 or more of either the complete set or the 5sh high value (Sc. #M7), and get the block of M7 expertized.
2- Buy a block of the 1p Brown Violet with blue overprint (Scott #M2a- Scott '10 CV = $100.- , and $ 125.- for NH) and get it expertized. The quantity issued for this variety is unknown,but was probably in the low ten thousands.
3- Buy the 3p Dark Violet Brown with double overprint (Scott M3a- Scott '10 CV = $ 750.-) and get it expertized. The quantity issued for this overprint error is unknown, but was probably in the low thousands.
4- As covers which contain complete used sets exist, purchase one of these if you can find one in nice condition, and get it expertized.
I favor better stamps of Australia, as it is a prosperous nation of 22 million people and a diverse economy, with thriving service, agricultural, and mining sectors. Annual GDP growth has average 3.6% over the past 15 years. Recently, there has been considerable growth in mining and petroleum extraction, in part due to increased exports to the resource-hungry Chinese market. It is likely that Australia's stamp collecting population will grow significantly as the nation ages. The percentage of Australians over 60 is projected to rise from 16% in 2000 to 24.8% in 2025, and 28.2% in 2050.