8 BIG reasons China still looks a hot investment bet

The Stamp Man

The Stamp Man

2019-07-01 09:56:03

719% growth over 10 years

The number is special in China… 

It is regarded the luckiest number. 

Pronounced “Ba” in Chinese, it sounds similar to the word “Fa”, which means to make a fortune.

If you invested in the Chinese stamp market 20 years ago, you almost certainly did make a fortune.

Explosive growth may have subsided to some extent over the past three years, but I believe the bull market in Chinese stamps has a long way to run yet.

Let me explain why…

Right now, I can clearly see 8 positive market indicators.

They indicate the Chinese stamp bull market, rather than being over, may have just begun…

1. Recent record prices set at auction 

Big auction realisations for Chinese stamps continue to surprise everyone.

A record price was set at a Chinese stamp auction in November last year.

The stamp in question was issued in 1968 from the Cultural Revolution, nicknamed “Big Patch of Red” by collectors.

It sold at the auction house China Guardian in Beijing for  $2 million.

Here it is in all its splendour…

It is now the 3rd most valuable stamp in the world after the British Guiana 1c Magenta ($9.5 million) and Swedish Treskilling Yellow ($2.9 million).

The 2018 edition of the Stanley Gibbons China catalogue lists this stamp at a value of £140,000. This realisation beat Stanley Gibbons' retail value by over 10 times. 

The stamp is officially named “The Whole Country is Red”. It features an army of Chinese citizens holding Mao’s ‘Little Red Book’, a symbol of Communism. It was given iconic status since it represented a defining statement of the country’s commitment to Communism at the time. 

However, the stamp was withdrawn because of a design mistake. The small island of Taiwan on the right was left in white, causing a huge outcry.

 Consequently, there are only 9 known examples of this stamp in existence.

 This realisation sets a benchmark for future sales, creates market confidence and can only bode well for valuations of key rarities from China.

2. Recommended as a “Top Choice Investment” by Forbes 

Chinese stamps have been recommended by Forbes Business Magazine as a “Top Choice Investment” based on the mirroring of the Chinese stamp market with the explosive growth of the Chinese economy.

In 2016, they tracked back the prices of around 3,000 Chinese stamps over the past 5 and 10 years. The results were astounding…

They quote:

 “The five year appreciation has averaged 164% and for ten years, 719%.”

There are not many investments out there which could claim this level of growth over such a sustained period.

3. The impact of Chinese millionaires 

The Hurun Report is widely recognised as the foremost authority in tracking the rapid changes in China’s entrepreneurial community.

They last reported that 64% of Chinese millionaires have invested in stamps.

With a reported 654,000 millionaires in China, there is clearly a lot of money flowing into the Chinese stamp market, inevitably forcing prices upwards.

 4. Record number of visitors to recent Chinese Stamp Exhibition 

The 2019 FIP General World Stamp Exhibition held from June 11 to 17 in the Chinese city of Wuhan saw a record high number of visitors at over 400,000. 

The week-long event reported visitors attending from 84 countries, boosting their cultural exchanges and mutual learning.

This provides evidence of a strong collector market and new entrants to the market providing important stimulus.

Collectors are the backbone supporting the market since they buy based on a passion and desire to own specific stamps to add to their collections. This creates the oxymoron of providing high liquidity whilst increasing scarcity. 

This major stamp event in China also enhanced cooperation and trading between China and the rest of the world.

5. An alternative form of currency 

In recent years, the Chinese government has made major efforts to clamp down on corruption by government officials. It is now extremely difficult for government officials to receive bribes through the banking system without detection.

Stamps offer a low visibility means of transferring wealth. It's thought likely they are increasingly being used as such. 

Their stability as an asset class, growing value and portability make them a perfect alternative form of currency.

It is even reported that stamps have been used as currency for business deals and used as collateral for borrowing and leveraging.

All these China-specific factors add impetus to the already buoyant market for Chinese stamps. 

6. The Chinese Cultural Revolution 

In 1966, China underwent a decade of huge change under Chairman Mao…

The country’s communist leader led a cultural revolution as an element of reasserting his authority over the Chinese government.

One of the rules imposed on the population was a ban on acquiring or collecting anything which could be considered an investment. Naturally, this included stamps.

Mao died on September 9, 1976. The Chinese population did not take long to pick up their beloved hobby of stamp collecting again, but with a heightened fervour. 

In the year 2000, the Chinese government put in place schemes to encourage schools to start stamp collecting clubs. Those children are now adults with disposable incomes.

Unlike most of the Western world, stamp collecting is cool in China. Building a valuable collection is something to be admired and acclaimed.

Stamps are even a popular gift in China, particularly modern commemorative stamps.

Fundamentally, all these dynamics cause the Chinese stamp market to have a depth of support like no other.

7. A way of getting money out of China 

In recent years we have been witnessing a huge outflow of wealth from China to other parts of the world.

In China, there is a limit of $50,000 per person per year which can be made in foreign bank transfers.

This creates a need for an alternative to cash. The portability of stamps makes them a perfect choice.

As a result, we are seeing more Chinese stamps appearing at auction in other parts of the world, particularly the US, UK and Switzerland.

This wider access to rare Chinese stamps has injected an additional stimulus into the collecting market with an increasing number of budding Chinese stamp collectors starting up all over the world. 

The worldwide interest in Chinese stamps provides some protection in the unlikely event the huge home support in China cools off. 

8. The Chinese Lucky Number! 

‘8’ is the Chinese lucky number and this is where you come in…

Chinese stamps are one of our biggest sellers, especially amongst our growing client base of investors.

You, and people like you, who see and understand the benefits of diversifying some of your wealth outside of your home economy…

And in a portable tangible asset.

You are partly responsible for creating a demand driven market and causing rising prices in a self-fulfilling prophecy.

My problem here is obvious…

How the heck can I get my hands on Chinese stamps to offer you when demand is so strong.

When you add to that the fact we only sell quality rare stamps, my job becomes nigh on impossible. 

That’s why I only ever have a small number of rare Chinese stamps available for you to buy.

Your opportunity to profit from the Chinese Stamp Revolution

Despite these seemingly insurmountable challenges, I do occasionally find hidden opportunities to secure rare Chinese stamps.

And, without overpaying…

Despite the high rates of growth in recent years, I have managed to get you some stamps where the prices remain relatively modest.

This gives plenty room for future growth.

 This is a rare chance to buy some nice quality Chinese rarities.

I just checked the date when I last had enough Chinese stamps to feature in a dedicated Chinese stamps e-mail. It was November 2017. 

These opportunities don’t come around often, so I urge you to take a look at the full selection available in the link below, whilst they are still available:


Here are a few of my own personal favourites:

China’s First Stamp

Price: £750 ($973) 


China (Shanghai) 1865 antique numerals 8ca olive-green, 'CANDAREENS' plural, wove paper 8ca olive-green (printing 59), SG4.

A fresh mint example with four large margins. It is extremely difficult to find better quality examples than this one.

Being the first postage stamp issue from China, with the iconic 'Dragon' design, it is a stamp which will always be in favour with collectors and investors alike.One for the bargain hunters

Price: £600 ($778)


China 1885 'CANDARINS' rough perforations 12½ set of 3 to 5ca olive-yellow, SG10/12.

Despite odd trivial tone, excellent colours and large part original gum, in a high quality condition rarely seen for this stamp issue with iconic 'Dragon' design.

The 'CANDARINS' are the equivalent to the penny black in China with some collectors focussing entirely on building a collection solely dedicated to this issue.

The SG catalogue price for this set of three is £785, representing a discount of 24%.

Exceptional quality complete set of US postal service stamps in China

Price: £2,500 ($3,243)


 China United States Postal Agency in Shanghai 1919 surcharges set of 16 to $2 on $1 purple-black. Also includes 1922 2c on 1c blue-green and 4c on 2c carmine, SG1/18.

These stamps represent all issues of the United States Postal Agency in Shanghai which was open from 1 July 1919 to 31 December 1922. They were valid for use on mail despatched from the US Postal Agency in Shanghai to addresses in the United States.

A nice well centred mint and fresh quality complete set of these rare stamps, with original gum.

The combined SG catalogue price for all stamps in the set is £2,550 (stated as cheapest price). Well centred examples are referred to as worth double this amount making this an attractively priced set.

Major Rarity at a reasonable price

Price: £8,500 ($11,025) 


 China SG78d, 1897 (May) large figure surcharge, 'spaced 1½ mm', on Dowager Empress third printing, ½c on 3ca dull yellow, variety surcharge spaced only ½ mm. Fine used by a part dollar chop in blue.

The Dowager Empress stamps were the very first commemorative stamps issued by China to celebrate the 60th Birthday of the Dowager Empress, one of the most powerful women in the history of China.

This stamp is a very rare variety of this popular stamp issue, with less than twenty examples being recorded. 

When you consider “The Whole Country is Red” stamp (where there are 9 examples) realised $2 million recently, this rarity appears under-valued in comparison.

3 Easy Ways to Secure these stamps

 To make sure you do not miss out on this opportunity to jump on-board one of the most obvious momentum tangible asset investments there is you can either: 

  1. Purchase directly from our website  
  2. Respond to this e-mail with details of the stamp(s) you would like to purchase 
  3. Call us on +44(0)1534 639998 to secure your stamp(s) before someone else gets in 

If you have any questions or need any other assistance with your stamps (buying or selling), please do get in touch. We would love to hear from you. 

Kind regards 

Mike Hall

CEO - Just Collecting

PS. It’s not too late to jump on-board the Chinese “gravy train”. The fastest ride may still be ahead of us.

 Enjoyed this email? Try these:

May 17, 2019: The Weird and Wonderful World of Stamps

May 10, 2019: Don't overlook the most obvious investment in stamps 

April 26, 2019: 10 Secrets to Successful Stamp Investing 

Come and join us on JustCollecting – the community for collectors


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