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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Stamp Investment Tip: Colombia 1910 Independence Centenary (Scott #331-38)

In 1910, Colombia celebrated the centenary of its attainment of independence from Spain by issuing a set of six stamps (Scott #331-38). Only 8,000 sets were issued, and Scott '11 prices the unused set at $437.55 . In all probability, the vast majority of sets were used and discarded.

A nation of 45 million people, Colombia has been plagued by decades of serious internal armed conflict, drug trafficking, corruption, and gross inequities of income, but has nevertheless racked up impressive annual GDP growth averaging 5.5% over the last 5 years. Moreover, until the global financial fiasco cut its GDP growth to 3% in 2009, it had been steadily accelerating, from 2% in 2003 to 8% in 2008. Recently, the government, armed to the teeth by the U.S., has applied a dual policy of combining military pressure with negotiations to cope with the various guerrilla factions within the country. This seems to have worked to some extent, as the number of insurgents has been halved, and the number of homicides and kidnappings drastically reduced. While some argue that the Colombian government is still utterly corrupt, and has violated human rights and supported paramilitary death squads in order to achieve relative peace, it may be that this is par for the course, given the nation's history. The main challenge that the country faces will be that of sharing more of the wealth with the majority of the population so as to develop more of a middle class and political center. Otherwise, it will devolve into an unstable mess.

Note that a center inverted error exists of the 1/2c low value (Scott #331a; CV= $ as unused).
While quantities issued of this error are not known, I'd estimate that no more than 200 were produced. I advise purchasing it conditional on obtaining expertization.

I have begun a new blog, "The Stamp Specialist", which will feature wholesale buy prices for stamps which I am interested in purchasing. It includes a buy list for Colombia, which lists the set recommended in this article. Viewing dealers' buy lists every now and then is an excellent


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