The Middle Eastern Specimen Explosion

Anyone who deals in, or
collects world currency may have noticed a significant spike in auction
estimates and results for Middle Eastern notes. Leading the pack are specimens
and color trials that have become increasingly popular among wealthy collectors.
This is not surprising, as they are scarce and hard to find in Gem condition
and also offer beautiful and intricate designs. Most portraits and motifs,
particularly those from Oman, bear realistic depictions. Guilloche borders,
ornate designs, and vibrant gradient colors combine to create desirable notes
for anyone looking for jaw dropping currency.

As a result of their
popularity, the prices of these notes have gone up tremendously over the past
few years making it common for many people to see returns on notes purchased
less than a year ago! At Stack’s Bowers Galleries, we have experienced a
significant increase in demand for such material, and fortunately we have been
provided with some fantastic pieces to satisfy our clients.

In our upcoming official
auction of the August ANA World’s Fair of Money we will offer P-21s and P-30s,
two gorgeous PMG Superb Gem 67 EPQ 50 Rials Specimens from Oman. The designs
are the same, with the exception of the date they were printed. These notes are
extremely colorful, are printed with almost every color in the rainbow, and
display bold inks and very bright red specimen overprints. Both of these are
conservatively estimated to bring between $2,000 and $3,000, but we wouldn’t be
surprised if they exceed that given recent interest.

We are also featuring a
gorgeous problem-free Color Trial Specimen from Syria. The 1958 100 Livres, in
Pick as P-85cts. This gradient note features hexagonal borders framing the
eagle at the right of center and the Watermark of the horse’s head. Punch
cancelled at the bottom left, with a red specimen over print just below center,
this note is quite a looker, with boardwalk margins and a Gem designation from

We are currently
accepting consignments for the rest of our 2016 auction season. If you are
interested in consigning to a 2016 Stack’s Bowers Galleries auction event, or
if you have a currency related question please call 1-800-458-4646 or email
Currency Specialist Aris Maragoudakis at or Director
of Currency Peter Treglia at

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Contact Us

West Coast Office • (800) 458-4646

Midwest Office • (800) 817-2646

East Coast Office • (800) 566-2580

Hong Kong, China Office • +852 2117 1191

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