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Thursday, July 17, 2014

Stamp Investment Tip: Spain 1938 Battle of Lepanto Souvenir Sheets (Scott #B108M-B108N, B108O-B108P)

   In 1938, the Nationalist forces under General Francisco Franco were winning over the Republicans fighting the Spanish Civil War, and several semi-postal souvenir sheets were issued which emphasized the Nationalists' patriotism, and ties to the Catholic Church. Among these were four souvenir sheetsm each containing one stamp, commemorating the Battle of Lepanto, a decisive naval battle in which Spain and other states decisively defeated the main fleet of the Ottoman Empire. 45,000 sets of two perforated sheets and 5,000 sets of two imperforate versions were issued (Scott #B108M-B108N, B108O-B108P), and and Scott '14 prices them unused at $45.- ($77.50 for NH) and $800.- ($1,300.- for NH), respectively.

    The sheets should do well based on the growth of stamp collector demand in Spain, as well as among Religion, Military/Naval, and Ship topicalists. 

    I strongly favor all scarce and undervalued issues of Spain and its colonies. The nation has 46 million people, the 9th largest economy in the world, and the most rapidly aging population in Europe, a trend which favors the growth of stamp collecting. Spain was hit by the global financial crisis and its annual GDP growth has been flat for five years, though the economy is beginning to recover.

   Those interested in becoming part of an international community of stamp collectors, dealers, and investors are encouraged to join the "Stampselectors" group at Facebook. The group hosts lively discussions concerning stamp investment and practical aspects of collecting, and provides a useful venue for those who wish to buy, sell, or trade stamps.    

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