Why high-end collectibles prices could be set to soar

If you notice prices rising at the top end of the collectibles sector over the coming months, don't be surprised.

The tightening of laws around tax havens could be great news for high-end treasure assets, forcing investors who for years have happily squirrelled their money away in offshore accounts to search for alternative places to store and grow wealth.

Just last month the US and Switzerland (the world's largest offshore banking region with a third of all funds) signed a deal that will impose far greater transparency on the Swiss accounts of Americans.

A similar agreement is already in effect between Switzerland and the UK.

Singapore, another popular tax haven, made tax evasion a crime earlier this summer, while Liechtenstein is also clamping down.

Switzerland tax haven
Switzerland. Home to chocolate, scenery and secret bank accounts? Not any more.

With the lid lifted, I expect many high net worth individuals (HNWIs) to pay much closer attention to tangible assets such as property, gold and collectibles both now and in the future.

'Huge sums of money are looking for a new onshore home'

And that's not just my belief.

Over to art expert Ivan Lindsay. Writing this month in Spear's magazine, he states: "Bloomberg's Billionaires Index estimates that more than 30 per cent of the world's richest 200 people, who have assets in excess of $2.8 trillion, control at least part of their fortune through offshore structures.

"This means huge sums of money are looking for a new onshore home and the art market is an obvious beneficiary. The money in Cyprus will be fleeing from there as soon as exchange controls are lifted."

Yet in my opinion, this won't simply impact the art market - the upper echelons of a number of collectibles sectors could see prices rise over the coming years, as investors look for other places for their capital.

So keep a look out for money that was previously employed in offshore accounts turning up at auctions of classic cars, stamps, rare coins - you name it.

Any market that has a strong track record of value increases could well be a focus of interest for HNWIs.

If you would like to beat the rush, why not investigate our Investment pages? Our 10 Reasons to Invest in Collectibles is a great place to start.

And then take a look at the items you can diversify with today.

Thanks for reading,


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