Canadian stamps are popular with U.S. collectors perhaps because of its proximity and shared history. It has some 1700 stamps that we at StampFinder would consider eligible for considering as of investment grade. As a group those selected here have appreciated an average of 60% for mint and 21% for used over the last 5 years and 191% for mint and 80% for used over the last ten. Valuing Canadian stamps is made more attractive, albeit, challenging by the fact that Canada is a British Commonwealth country and thereby has a broader worldwide collector base where the Stanley Gibbons catalog prevails. It also has an excellent local catalog, Unitrade, which uses the Scott catalog numbering system and provides generally lower prices than Scott. This pricing disparity has grown significantly in the last year as the Canadian dollar has fallen to 83 cents from parity with the US dollar. This change has made it quite advantageous for the purchase of most stamps from Canadian dealers still pricing off Unitrade. As for dealers using the SG catalog, their pricing for Canadian stamps seems to be an exception to their normal position of being the world price leaders. For the present, Scott is the price leader which might imply that future appreciation will be slow in coming. I doubt this, however, since SG is unlikely to remain a laggard for long in its pricing.
On the list of best buys I have shown the Gibbons to Scott ratio (G/S Ratio) and the Unitrade to Scott ratio (U/S Ratio) to help you find the best market for buying each item. This is one of the great features of the Internet, that you can shop the world in various currencies to get the best price. This will not last, so take advantage while you can. A more comprehensive list of best buys will be featured shortly on our website www.stampfinder.com. Note that our best buy star ratings are based on a number of variables not displayed here. The selection represents a cross-section of stamps that can be purchased on the Internet and don't depend on an auction. This leaves out many higher priced stamps which have shown phenomenal growth.
Using the type of analysis featured here gives the stamp buyer an advantage over dealers in that he can research a stamp and determine where to buy it most advantageously. Dealers do little research except for higher priced items. He is pricing hundreds of items weekly and he rarely goes back to re-price older items that may have just recently risen in value. You will often encounter a dealer offering the same item at different prices merely because one entered his inventory recently while the other has been there quite a while. Since we can expect currency values to continue to fluctuate, don't be surprised if foreign dealers become smart enough to offer you pricing by Scott number, or In U.S. dollars or to view his site in English rather than the local language. These are all keys to identifying you as a U.S. buyer and therefor offering you U.S. pricing rather than the lower in-country prices. The technology is already there to do this and continued currency movements will only accelerate the change.
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