Collectibles, property and bad habits
Stamp on it
Got a stash of old letters in your attic? Perhaps you collected stamps as a youngster and still have the albums stashed away. If so, you could literally be sitting on a fortune as stamp collecting takes off in Asia. The popularity of email over ‘snail mail’ over the past two decades has meant the use for stamps in their previous capacity has greatly diminished – thus creating a new rarity value – especially for dealers in the East. Investors looking for new opportunities means the Far East now accounts for more the two thirds of the worlds’ 60 million collectors and the market is reportedly ‘buzzing’. Read more here
More property growth
Hot on the heels of the announcement that the UAE is only behind Hong Kong and China in the property market growth stakes, Hamptons MENA (Middle East and North Africa) has announced a massive 41% growth in the first quarter of 2013. The property services company’s sales increase was mainly due to the residential sector, which saw a 38% rise and demand in its property price portfolio. Across the board, property prices have risen by 21% since January 2013 – a massive increase which could potentially lead to another property bubble forming. IMF leaders have warned that Dubai’s investors should approach the economic upturn with caution. Read more here
On the rebound?
As the UAE’s property industry and economy make their startling resurrection, it’s worth looking at the other elements that also rose exponentially during the 2004-2008 boom. Personal debt is on the rise in the UAE – and rose by 3.1% between January and April 2013, which prompted the Central Bank to step in and impose a ban on loan ‘shopping’. CBRE, the global property consultant has stated the UAE needs tighter regulations in order to maintain a stable and growing business environment. The Emirates Foundation has also launched a campaign to help educate Emiratis on the importance of sound financial planning and spending. Lets hope it’s not too little, too late. Read more here.