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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Stamp Investment Tip: Palestine 1918 5m on 1pi Gray Blue (Scott #3a)

In 1918, the British issued their first stamps for Palestine, formerly a Turkish emirate, which had been occupied by the Egyptian Expeditionary Force of the British Army during World War I. Initially, they had issued 1 piaster stamps (Scott #1 and 2, of which #1 was recommended in an earlier article) for overseas usage, as many soldiers wished to send letters back to England, but they neglected to issue
5m stamps for domestic mail (including letters to Egypt). Accordingly, they created a provisional surcharge by overprinting some of the 1p stamps "5 Milliemes."

The normal 5m on 1p Ultramarine stamp (Scott #3, pictured at top left) is quite common, but the Gray Blue variety (Scott #3a) is not, as only 55,560 were issued. Scott '11 prices it at $105.00 for unused.

Stamps of Israel and the Palestine Mandate are popular among stamp collectors in Israel and among Jewish collectors throughout the world. Stamps of the British Mandate Period are of particular interest from an investment standpoint, because they also appeal to British Commonwealth collectors.

Israel is considered one of the most advanced countries in the world in terms of economic development. As a technology powerhouse which leads the world in the number of scientists and engineers per capita, it also has the second largest number of start-up companies after the U.S.. Israel's main burden is having to spend much of its GNP on defending itself from some of its more bellicose neighbors. Should peace break out, trade will grow exponentially, and Israel could serve as a model for economic development in the Mid-East and much of the Third World. In that event, the better stamps of Israel and the Palestine Mandate will increase dramatically.

Those who wish to learn more about stamps of Israel and the Palestine Mandate should consider purchasing a Bale Catalogue, which classifies and values many items not listed in Scott, including forerunners, errors, varieties, machine-vended stamps, revenues, postal stationery, and booklets.

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 a forum for those who wish to discuss philatelic investing and practical aspects of stamp collecting.


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