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Commentary No. 108 - 17 June, 2008

The New 2009 Scott Catalogue

The 2009 Scott Catalogue, Volume 2, arrived in Montreal in mid-May. This was a month earlier than a year ago. As indicated in our Special Commentary dated May 21, 2008, the prices in the new catalogue were up across the board. Here are some noteworthy examples:

Scott 5
Scott 12
2009 $25,000
2009 $12,000
2008 $12,500
2008 $6,000
Scott 33
Scott 44
2009 $20,000
2009 $220
2008 $14,000
2008 $140

In recent years, most changes in the Scott catalogues were found in the 1870 to 1930 period, the Small Queens to the Arch sets. But in the last 2 years, the early classics have shone as have the imperforates. This year we particularly noted the advance in Canada’s booklets and many of the modern varieties.

There were five new listings as described in an attached schedule. We were pleased to see that prices are being shown for the following 5 modern varieties for the first time - Scott 1601b, 1837a, 1932a, 1945a and 2081b. There is still no price for Scott 1679b which is surprising since this stamp has appeared at auction on five occasions of which we are aware.

Here is a quick overview of the pricing changes.

Early Canada (Scott 1-13) - Mint stamps moved up strongly 20% to 30%, used stamps up 10% to 20%. Over the past three years, Scott 5 mint has moved from $9,500 to $12,500 to $25,000. Scott 12 mint rose from $3,500 to $6,000 to $12,500.

Cents issue (Scott 14-20) - Both mint and used stamps moved up. Imperforate pairs were particularly strong. Over the past three years, Scott 14a has risen from $3,250 to $4,250 to $5,000. Scott 18b rose from $3,250 to $3,500 to $5,000.

Large Queens (Scott 21-33) - Just about all the mint stamps in the set moved up strongly, 20% to 30%. This was a big change from last year when there was little change. Most noticeable were the watermarked stamps and those on laid paper. Over the past three years, the 15¢ stamp with the script watermark moved from $11,000 to $15,000 to $22,500. The 3¢ stamp on laid paper rose from $10,000 to $14,000 to $20,000.

Small Queens (Scott 34-47) - This set also rose strongly from 20% to 30%. This is not surprising as the market for VF mint copies of this set have been particularly strong and a look at our new record prices for the past 2 years includes a great number of Small Queens. There were major advances in the imperforates and in the stamps with the rare 11½ x12 perforations. Over the past three years, Scott 38, the 5¢ slate green rose from $500 to $725 to $925. Scott 39, the 6¢ yellow brown rose from $400 to $550 to $725.

Jubilees (Scott 50-65) - This set rose 20% to 30%. It was a big change from last year when there was almost no change. The stand outs were the 8¢, 15¢ and 50¢ stamps, all up over 30%.

Maple Leafs (Scott 66-73) - The set was up 47%, well above last year’s 10% increase. The 10¢ mint increased from $750 to $1,250.

Numerals (Scott 74-84) - The set rose 18%, up from 10% last year. Over the past three years, the lowly ½ ¢ stamp has risen from $8.50 to $11.50 to $15.00. In the same period, the10¢ stamp rose from $575 to $675 to $800.

Edward VII (Scott 89-95) - This set increased 22%, up from 10% a year ago.

Quebec Tercentenary (Scott 149-161) - This set rose 12%.

Admirals (Scott 104-164) - The regular stamps in the set increased 8%, about the same as last year. The imperforates resumed their climb of the past few years, rising 24% in this year’s catalogue.

Scroll (Scott 149-161) - The regular stamps rose 10%. The imperforates were up 22%.

Arch (Scott 162-177) - The regular stamps increased 6%. The imperforates rose 20%.

Pictorials (Scott 241-245) - Minor increases for this set.

War set (Scott 249-262) - No change this year for the regular stamps but an amazing 41% increase for the imperforates.

1940s - Modest advances

1950s - Modest advances. An exception was Scott 387a, the well known “Inverted Seaway” which rose from $9,250 to $12,000.

1960s - Modest increases in general. There were strong increases in the booklets, coils, imperforates and stamps printed on gum of the Centennial Set.

1970s - Modest increases in general, but stronger increases for the imperforates.

1980s - Modest increases in general, but surprisingly strong increases for some of the varieties, especially those with printing errors, missing colours, double impressions and stamps printed on gum.

1990s - Same as above. As well, the booklets and perforation varieties of Scott 1349-1396 did well.

2000s - Same as above.

Back of the Book:

Airmail stamps – Prices strong; Scott C4 increased from $55 to $70; imperforates strong.
Special Delivery – Prices up modestly; imperforates strong.
Registered stamps – Prices strong; NH stamps were priced for the first time.
Postage Due – Prices up modestly; imperforates strong. J10a up from $2,250 to $3,000.
War Tax – Prices up modestly.

Stamp prices in general:

We were a bit surprised at the extent of the overall price increases this year, they were more than we expected. For example we don’t see evidence of the stronger prices for Canada’s more modern imperforates. They sell regularly, but not at full catalogue prices. On the other hand, the early classics have been receiving very strong prices at auction with a steady stream of new record prices.

The strongest areas at auction remained the sets between the Small Queens and the Admirals. Year after year, the prices for these sets advance and this is reflected in the Scott prices.

We particularly noticed the strong prices for the booklets in this year’s catalogue. While we think this is warranted in view of their scarcity, we do not see it in the auction prices.

For more details of the price increases and new listings, please click on the following links:

Noticeable price increases in the 2009 catalogue

New listings

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©2008, Canadian Stamp Auctions Ltd., Montréal, Québec, Canada