Personal Finance: Christmas Toy Buys Can Pay off in Future

The Birmingham Post (England), December 14, 2002 | Go to article overview

Personal Finance: Christmas Toy Buys Can Pay off in Future


Byline: Peter Fleming

The Christmas shopping frenzy could push spending on toys this year through the pounds 2 billion barrier, according to Halifax General Insurance.

But if you are lucky, the toys you fork out for this Christmas could more than pay for themselves in years to come if they catch the eye of a collector.

A Matchbox fire engine has just been auctioned in America for about pounds 18,000. When the toy first came out it cost one shilling and sixpence (7p).

Toys from previous decades are now proving a hit with collectors throughout the world.

In America, the eBay Internet auction site is featuring a Barbie doll with a reserve price of pounds 1,270, while on the British site a rare Barbie from 1971 is attracting bids in excess of pounds 100.

This year's top selling Barbie costs around pounds 20.

Loveable old favourites are in demand too and thousands of teddies are expected to find new homes this Christmas.

This year marks the 100th birthday of teddy bears. Most are boys, but the highest price of all - pounds 110,000, which was double the previous record - was achieved by a 1905 Steiff Teddy Girl auctioned in 1994.

China figures based on The Snowman film, now celebrating its 20th anniversary, are on collectors' shopping lists too.

Top toys from the past decade which achieved sales success include: 2001 Bionicle Lego, 2000 Teksta ,1999 Furby Babies, 1998 Furby, 1997 Teletubbies, 1996 Barbie,1995 POGS, 1994 Power Rangers, 1993 Thunderbirds Tracey Island and 1992 WWF Wrestlers.

All have their aficionados and can command high prices from enthusiastic collectors.

A rare, boxed Home Hill Teletubbies playset could fetch pounds 70 while a Royal Majesty Furby could set you back pounds 40.

If you are buying a toy with an eye on its future money-making potential, then buy one to play with and one to keep, experts advise. …

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