How to turn $5 into $24,000 - with rare collectibles from art to books
In 1997, a first edition Harry Potter book was worth $5. Today? Closer to $24,000 - and here's why
Paul Fraser Collectibles, Monday 6 February 2012
It happened last year. Scores of people queued for hours and hours in the rain. Many had a chance of getting a potential 4,000% profit in less than 24 hours.
What kind of asset can bring you such a return? It was a collectible - and a very unique one at that. In fact, the asset in question was a unique limited edition Banksy artwork.
Each Banksy print was for sale priced at £5. But this is Banksy we're talking about... An artist whose fans include Hollywood A-list stars; whose works regularly sell for six figures at auction.
Many of the lucky queuers who got their hands on a £5 Banksy went straight to eBay. Within 24 hours, the very same prints were changing hands for as much as £200 each!
That's equal to a 4,000% profit. Beats the interest rate of an average savings account, doesn't it?
Banksy nets six figures at auction - and his fans netted a 4,000% profit on eBay
At the time, Paul described the £5 Banksy portraits as 'instant collectibles'. Because of their rarity and demand, they instantly accrued value.
And rare Banksy portraits aren't the only examples of 'instant collectibles' on today's markets. Another great example dates to four years ago...
In 2008, the Royal Mint struck a batch of 20 pence coins. But there was an error in the minting process, meaning that some coins didn't have a date printed on them.
Find one of those 20p coins today and you could get £100 for it from the London Mint Office. Or, like the Banksy buyers, you could try your luck on eBay.
JK Rowling is a billionaire - and her fans had a chance of a 9,900% profit
Another great example is everybody's favourite boy wizard, Harry Potter. Last week, a rare first paperback edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone sold for £320.
Just 15 years ago, in 1997, you could have bought the same book for 1% of that price - let's say about £3.20 (around $5) - in a typical book shop.
But a lot has changed since 1997. Harry Potter became a household name, and author Joanne Rowling went from being a penniless single mum to a wealthy billionaire author.
And while £320 may seem like a lot for a single book, first edition Harry Potter books can actually sell for a lot more. Particularly if it bears Rowling's autograph.
Back in February 2010, a copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, signed and inscribed by author JK Rowling, brought $24,000 at a US auction.
The average value of Joanne Rowling's signature rose by 279.7% between 2000-2011. In other words, a signed Harry Potter book worth £395 in 2000 may have risen in value to £1,500.
And as for what the same book could be worth in another 11 years...
Rare coins, art and books... And rare 'Victoria Cross' postage stamps
In 2006, a series of postage stamps were issued to mark the "150th Anniversary of the Victoria Cross" - the highest decoration awarded to members of the British and Commonwealth armed forces.
Yet a mistake was made. Some booklet panes of the stamps were issued with the bronze and phosphor aspects of their design omitted.
Today, those stamps can sell for £17,000.
And its apt that these stamps were issued to commemorate the Victoria Cross. A Victoria Cross awarded to Flying Officer Lloyd Alan Trigg during World War II sold for £120,000 in 1998.
In 2011, Edward Kenna's VC brought £678,000. Each represented the VC market's high-end in 1998 and 2011.
From these sales, we can surmise that Victoria Cross values have gone up by roughly 14.25% year-on-year.
As each of these examples go to show: whether it's rare artworks, classic books or rare stamps or coins, there are many opportunities for you to enjoy your favourite collecting hobbies and potentially net a profit at the same time.
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Harry Potter First Edition 'Philosopher's Stone' book rises in value by 9,900% | 2 February 2012
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