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Ex post: The investment performance of collectible stamps

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  • Dimson, Elroy
  • Spaenjers, Christophe

Abstract

This paper uses stamp catalogue prices to investigate the returns on British collectible postage stamps over the period 1900-2008. We find an annualized return on stamps of 7.0% in nominal terms, or 2.9% in real terms. These returns are higher than those on bonds but below those on equities. The volatility of stamp prices approaches that of equities. Stamp returns are impacted by movements in the equity market, but the systematic risk of stamps remains low. Stamps partially hedge against unanticipated inflation. Estimates of average after-cost returns for individual investors show that stamps may rival equities in terms of realized performance.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Financial Economics.

Volume (Year): 100 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (May)
Pages: 443-458

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jfinec:v:100:y:2011:i:2:p:443-458

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505576

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Keywords: Alternative investments Indexes Long-term returns Philately Stamps;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Dimson, Elroy & Rousseau, Peter L. & Spaenjers, Christophe, 2013. "The Price of Wine," Working Papers 164656, American Association of Wine Economists.
  2. Roman Kraussl & Arthur Korteweg & Patrick Verwijmeren, 2013. "Does it Pay to Invest in Art? A Selection-corrected Returns Perspective," LSF Research Working Paper Series 13-7, Luxembourg School of Finance, University of Luxembourg.
  3. Turner, John D., 2014. "Financial history and financial economics," QUCEH Working Paper Series 14-03, Queen's University Centre for Economic History, Queen's University Belfast.
  4. Renneboog, Luc & Spaenjers, Christophe, 2012. "Hard assets: The returns on rare diamonds and gems," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 220-230.
  5. Renneboog, L.D.R., 2013. "The Returns on Investment Grade Diamonds," Discussion Paper 2013-025, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  6. Franses, Ph.H.B.F. & Knecht, W., 2012. "The Late 1970's Bubble in Dutch Collectible Postage Stamps," Econometric Institute Research Papers EI 2013-02, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus School of Economics (ESE), Econometric Institute.
  7. Antonio Di Cesare & Philip A. Stork & Casper G. de Vries, 2011. "Risk measures for autocorrelated hedge fund returns," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 831, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  8. Xin Chen & Xian Chen, 2012. "Stamp characteristics and long-term return after issuance: evidence from new China stamps," China Finance Review International, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 2(2), pages 351-376, August.
  9. Arthur Korteweg & Roman Kräussl & Patrick Verwijmeren, . "Does it pay to invest in Art? A Selection-corrected Returns Perspective," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 13-152/IV/61, Tinbergen Institute.
  10. David le Bris & William N. Goetzmann & Sébastien Pouget, 2014. "Testing Asset Pricing Theory on Six Hundred Years of Stock Returns: Prices and Dividends for the Bazacle Company from 1372 to 1946," NBER Working Papers 20199, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Antonio Di Cesare & Philip A. Stork & Casper G. de Vries, 2011. "Risk Measures for Autocorrelated Hedge Fund Returns," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 11-084/2/DSF 23, Tinbergen Institute.

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