Stamps I Want To Buy
This is a basic overview and guide to Chinese stamps for non-collectors that have recently inherited a collection.
I BUY STAMPS ISSUED BY THEse COUNTRIES
China, Taiwan (Formosa), Hong Kong, Macau, Peoples Republic of China, Korea, Nepal, Tibet, Mongolia, Vietnam, Indochina, Indonesia, Manchukuo, Thailand (Siam) & The Japanese Occupation of China . I also buy stamps from The Treaty Ports: Shanghai, Amoy, Chefoo, Chinkiang, Chungking, Foodchow, Hankow, Ichang, Kewkiang, Nanking, Wei Hai Wei, Wuhu , Kiaochow (Tsingtao), China Expeditionary Force (C.E.F.) and Foreign Post Offices in China. DO NOT SEND ME STAMPS FROM OUTSIDE THESE AREAS.
Chinese stamps from before 1950 (Pre-communist china):
- Imperial Issues(1878-1912): There are lots of high value collectible stamps, such as Large Dragons, Dowagers and Red Revenues that are worth $15- $1,000 per stamp.
- Early Republic Issues(1912-1936): This time period has scarce hi-value stamps, such as overprinted Chinese Imperial Post issues, as well as many common low-value used stamps such as Junks and Reapers that are worth as little as $0.15 to $0.75 per used stamp.
- Wartime Issues(1937-1945): This time period is difficult to assess and is frustrating for sellers since there is a huge volume of low value used Dr. Sys stamps for $0.20-$3.00 per stamp so buyers are not willing to pay much for most collections. These issues often have overprints and provincial issues that are difficult to identify and hard to sell since these stamps don’t normally appeal to a wide audience. These stamps require expertise to properly identify. Rarer varieties such as inverted overprints, double overprints, imperforates between, and printing errors are often valued at over $100 per stamp.
- Inflationary Period (1945-1949): This period is dominated by low value Chinese National Currency, Gold Yuan and Silver Yuan issues with overprints that have little value. However, there are some hidden gems that are quite scarce so this period is labor intensive to determine the value of a collection and whether a collection has any of these gems in it. Collectors and investors must go through thousands of stamps from this period to find a few valuable stamps.
- Japanese Occupation issues: Dates vary from 1941-1945 for the various regions. The stamps are often overprinted. Lots of low value stamps, but also a few mid-value stamps and only a handful of high value stamps.
- Formosa (Taiwan) : I am interested in all stamps from pre-1960 but there are only a few valuable stamps from this period. This is not my primary area of focus.
- Shanghai and Treaty Ports (1865-1897): These stamps are generally desirable and more valuable. There are very few catalogs and auction houses that cover this period so values are difficult to assess and range widely.
- Hong Kong(1862-1973): The early-issues from 1862-1938 are generally higher value stamps. These stamps are well covered in the Stanley Gibbons Stamp Catalogue Part 17 CHINA, since Stanley Gibbons catalogs do a good job on the entire Biritsih Empire.
- PRC Liberated (Communist) Areas: These stamps were issued in areas that were being liberated by the communist. There best catalog for these areas is : Yang’s Postage Stamp Catalogue of The Peoples Republic of China (Liberated Area). These stamp are difficult to identify and value because there is no updated catalog, few published auction results and lots of overprints. The stamps are in poor condition since they were issued during military conflict on flimsy paper, and were only issued for a short period of time. Many of the issues from these areas are valuable but few of these stamps ended up in US collections. Most of these stamps are rare.
Peoples Republic of China (PRC-Red China or Communist China) Stamps issued starting in 1950:
- 1950-1952: These stamps are often categorized as originals and reprints. The original are highvalue and the reprints are common and of little value. Assessing whether a stamp from this period is an original or reprint is time intensive and requires knowledge of the subtle differences between reprints and originals.
- 1953-1959: Most stamps are common, issued without gum and available for low prices for mint and used. Full sets of mint stamps have some value and there are a few hi-value stamps from this period.
- 1960-1979: This is the most exciting time period for PRC stamp collecting. There are lots of high value stamps that are quite desirable if the stamps are mint and never hinged. Collectors of these stamps are VERY PARTICULAR ABOUT CONDITION. This time period represents the strongest area for market prices relative to catalog value. Many stamps from this period sell for as hi as 50-80% of CV and some of the most desirable stamps in VF+ condition (MINT NH) can sell for in excess of CV. If you have lots of mint never hinged complete sets from this time period you may want to consider selling your stamps at a traditional auction house in Hong Kong to try to get top dollar and the auction houses may even discount your seller’s premium if you have a collection that exceeds $50,000 in value.
- 1980-1990: These stamps were produced in huge numbers and are generally available for very low prices. I do not focus on investing in this time period.
I do not have the expertise or time to assess stamps from outside of these areas. Collections of stamps issued by the United States and Canada, or European or South American countries should be assessed by a dealer, auction house, collector or buyer that focuses on these areas.