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David Feldman Spring Auctions, April 1-5, 2008, Feature Great Results for Rarities

Reflecting the continuing strong market for rare stamps and postal history, and with dealers and exhibitors looking towards the major international exhibitions coming up, culminating with London 2010, our latest series of auctions, held April 1-5, 2008, totalled nearly 10 million Euro, averaging 30% over the estimates and with a very high percentage of lots sold.

The semi-annual auction of Rarities of the World & Important Collections included four great world rarities. The first on offer was the British Guiana 1851 "Cotton Reel" issue "2 cents" error on pale blue paper, on a cover formerly in the Burrus Collection. It opened at 360'000 Euro and sold for 597'500 Euro to a telephone bidder. Soon after, the only known unused example of the Baden 9 kreuzer error of colour on blue-green paper, with nearly full original gum, brought 1'314'500 Euro, far eclipsing its previous results in 1991 and 1997 auctions.

The next lot was the newly-discovered cover with the largest known franking of the 1850 1 schilling first issue of Schleswig-Holstein (two strips of three), used from Ploen; it sold for 478'000 Euro in its maiden appearance at public auction, while the famous "Trondheim" block of 39 of Norway's first issue brought 1'434'000 Euro. When people inquired about the identity of the buyers for some of these items, Feldman philatelist Anders Thorell said, "There is a confidentiality issue inherent in our business, however we can state that the buyer represents a foreign company presently acquiring great world philatelic rarities."

Other lots among the Rarities included an important Canada collection offered in several lots, starting with a mint 1851 12d Black with sheet margin that realised 155'350 Euro, while the rest brought an aggregate of 133'840 Euro against upper estimates totalling 51'000 Euro. A collection of United States formed in Europe, estimated for a minimum of about 75'000 Euro spread over 12 lots, was sold for 168'973 Euros to several different buyers who competed intensely for every lot. Also on offer were a Romania 1862 6 parale single franking on newspaper wrapper, estimated for 6'000 to 9'000 Euro, which soared from an opening bid of 8'000 to a final result of 31'000 Euro in a long struggle among several bidders.

Our offer of the second part of the "Kristall" Estate of Sweden saw the famous cover franked by a block and a single of the 1855 4 skilling value open for 95'000 Euro and conclude at 227'000 Euro - typical of the strong realisations throughout the auction. For example, an imperforate set of blocks of the 1874 Officials, estimated at 10'000 Euro, brought 26'290 Euro.

Among the Europe and Colonies lots on offer, a section of France drew much interest and excellent results for covers with uncommon frankings or to unusual destinations, with results often reaching multiples of estimates. Overseas lots included strong coverage of a large Egypt section, while Persia rarities and inverted centres brought excellent results.

British area lots, and particularly Great Britain proper, were offered in profusion. A session which included several hundred "Penny Blacks" in high quality drew intense bidding from the room as well as from those bidding via the internet, with lot after lot soaring to levels well above estimate. For example, a block of four of the 1d "Rainbow Trials," estimated at 5'000 Euro, brought 14'340 Euro - and this result was typical of the realisations throughout the session, with some "Penny Blacks" bringing 360 to 420 Euro each, and one from plate 11, matched with a "Penny Red" from the same plate and position, bringing 3’107 Euro.

Collections, lots and estates, offered in a separate group of sessions as well as being included in the Sweden and Rarities auctions, again proved that no matter the area, the degree of specialisation or the mixture of contents, there is very strong demand when aspirations for both quality and rarity are met.

Bidders watching and participating via the internet were more important than ever, and many had taken advantage of the extensive scans of large lots the company had posted allowing collectors to view every item in a large lot in full size and colour. Managing Director Marcus Orsi estimated that the internet added at least 35% to the total realisation, and stated, "This has been one of our most successful auction series, and demonstrates our ability to generate strong results for every area of philately and for every kind of lot, from a modest accumulation to a world-class rarity. Our company continues its tradition of leadership in the auction business for world-wide stamps, covers, and collections, and our results prove it, time after time."

The catalogues and prices realised can be seen on the company's web site, www.davidfeldman.com. The next scheduled David Feldman auction will be held October 1-5, 2008 and will close after the middle of July. David Feldman SA is known for its tradition of innovation, friendly and knowledgeable staff and flexible arrangements with vendors - all of which contribute to strong results in the auctions held twice a year.

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