Paul Fraser Collectibles' survey of a sample of 10,000 serious collectors in 214 countries has revealed the top 10 most popular areas of collecting:
1. Rare stamps
2. Fine wine
4. Space memorabilia
6. Historical manuscripts
8. Music memorabilia
Paul Fraser, founder of Paul Fraser Collectibles, comments: "Rare stamps are at number one but for those thinking of buying for investment purposes, the emphasis has to be on the word 'rare'.
"It's also interesting to see space memorabilia at number four. This year's death of Neil Armstrong has brought increased interest into this already flourishing market."
Other key market movers include autographs, which have shown a 14.0% pa rise in value since 2000for leading examples, and music memorabilia, with Elvis, the Beatles and Michael Jackson collectibles particularly hot - Elvis' personal bible sold for £59,000 ($94,388) in September.
The survey also asked collectors for their motivations behind buying collectibles. It found:
· 6.7% purchase collectibles solely as an investment
· 18.0% purchase collectibles solely for the pleasure of ownership
· 69.3% purchase collectibles for a combination of investment purposes and pleasure of ownership
With a total of 76% of respondents stating that they buy collectibles with their investment potential in mind, the figures are indicative of the growing appreciation of collectibles as financial assets.
Fraser comments: "Baby boomers in the West and the growing middle classes of the BRIC nations are increasingly searching out these unique assets, which can be both enjoyable and profitable."
This is demonstrated by BRIC traffic to Paul Fraser Collectibles' websitein the past year:Brazil +128.3% on 2011, Russia +53.2%, India +44.9% and China +24.4%.
"This is not a bubble, but just the beginning of the realisation that these tangible assets have an increasing value, and a deserved place in any portfolio," states Fraser.
The survey also provided details on annual spending habits on collectibles:
· 34.0% <$1,000
· 34.0% $1,000 - $4,999
· 13.3% $5,000 - $9,999
· 18.7% $10,000+
"With almost a fifth of respondents spending more than $10,000 a year, it is imperative that these buyers receive expert advice before investing, as mistakes can be made by those new to the sector," says Fraser.