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Frank Hovis

Private Number Plates

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Following on from Injin's money thread (the most recent one) I've been trying to come up with something that has zero intrinsic value but a high ascribed value and I've come up with private number plates.

Reasons being:

Whenever you buy a car, new or second hand, it always comes with a number plate included in the price.

I said zero intrinsic value, but actually negative intrinsic value. Because if you have a private plate and change your car you have to pay to do this each time. So owning a private plate costs you.

Alll the other bubbles or overpriced goods have a value (or were believed to have a value wrt dotcom stocks), however low, e.g.:

Tulipmania - tulip bulbs let you grow a tulip

Houses - you can live in them or rent them out

Gold - it has an industrial use and acts as a portable store of wealth

Shares - pay dividends

Private plates do well in boom times, as people look for something to buy, and the definition of what constitutes a private plates expands (those where you realise they must be private because the plate age doesn't match the car age).

So given all that I would expect a graph of the price of private plates over time to be like a succession of ski slopes and to be a useful lead indicator of private spending drying up.

But.... I can't find historical stats to prove it :( . Can anybody dig some out?

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UK towns move to extend abusive license plate surveillance grid

Taras sez, "British local authorities are queuing up to connect their CCTV cameras to a national system which tracks cars by their registration plates. Any camera, if high enough resolution, can be adapted to work with the software. The Information Commissioner is concerned, as ever, but under-resourced and basically powerless. People who have taken part in anti-war rallies are already having their cars stopped by Anti-Terror Units for no good reason and being questioned under threat of arrest."

John Catt found himself on the wrong side of the ANPR system. He regularly attends anti-war demonstrations outside a factory in Brighton, his home town.

It was at one of these protests that Sussex police put a "marker" on his car. That meant he was added to a "hotlist".

This is a system meant for criminals but John Catt has not been convicted of anything and on a trip to London, the pensioner found himself pulled over by an anti-terror unit.

"I was threatened under the Terrorist Act. I had to answer every question they put to me, and if there were any questions I would refuse to answer, I would be arrested. I thought to myself, what kind of world are we living in?"

Aren't you glad you live in a democrazy?

Beeb: Camera grid to log number plates

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Following on from Injin's money thread (the most recent one) I've been trying to come up with something that has zero intrinsic value but a high ascribed value and I've come up with private number plates.

Reasons being:

Whenever you buy a car, new or second hand, it always comes with a number plate included in the price.

I said zero intrinsic value, but actually negative intrinsic value. Because if you have a private plate and change your car you have to pay to do this each time. So owning a private plate costs you.

Alll the other bubbles or overpriced goods have a value (or were believed to have a value wrt dotcom stocks), however low, e.g.:

Tulipmania - tulip bulbs let you grow a tulip

Houses - you can live in them or rent them out

Gold - it has an industrial use and acts as a portable store of wealth

Shares - pay dividends

Private plates do well in boom times, as people look for something to buy, and the definition of what constitutes a private plates expands (those where you realise they must be private because the plate age doesn't match the car age).

So given all that I would expect a graph of the price of private plates over time to be like a succession of ski slopes and to be a useful lead indicator of private spending drying up.

But.... I can't find historical stats to prove it :( . Can anybody dig some out?

Frank

I have a cheap private plate on my modest car which I intend to keep for 10 years.

The main reason I bought it (cost me £140) was to hide the age of the car. It is related to my profession so I got tax relief on it too as I claimed it was publicity and got away with it.

My brother does the same because in his work you can't be seen in a car that is obviously more than a year old (Limo driver)

They have been a good investment in the past but I notice some of the silly prices have come off the peak.

You are quite correct that the main reason for many people buying is the hope of a greater fool so at the top end these are a pure bubble but for me and my brother they have been a sensible purchase.

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Yeah I remember sometime around the mid-90's when private plates started to appear in droves - it seemed to me to be another step change towards the cult of the individual - a definite shift in the national mood.

I think they will probably become symbols of great resentment. People will be envied and loathed purely for being able to still afford to motor. Having a private plate will just rub it in.

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Frank

I have a cheap private plate on my modest car which I intend to keep for 10 years.

The main reason I bought it (cost me £140) was to hide the age of the car. It is related to my profession so I got tax relief on it too as I claimed it was publicity and got away with it.

My brother does the same because in his work you can't be seen in a car that is obviously more than a year old (Limo driver)

They have been a good investment in the past but I notice some of the silly prices have come off the peak.

You are quite correct that the main reason for many people buying is the hope of a greater fool so at the top end these are a pure bubble but for me and my brother they have been a sensible purchase.

Ah, so there is some intrinsic value of private plates in certain occupations, albeit a low one, so that's a floor then.

Your kind of demand won't create any bubbles though as it's not a speculative / vanity purchase.

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Ah, so there is some intrinsic value of private plates in certain occupations, albeit a low one, so that's a floor then.

Your kind of demand won't create any bubbles though as it's not a speculative / vanity purchase.

The biggest profiteer from private plates are the Government as the DVLA holds back any interesting ones then auctions them.

Many are only meaningful if the spacing of the letters is altered or if black screw-heads are used to alter the apperance of a letter - such as changing a c to an e - inciting a crime in fact.

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I was behind a car yesterday with a number plate beginning KN09, which aside from making me think...he must be the chap who bought a new car this year ( :lol: )...I also thought that if there are KN09s on the road there must also be many KN08s on the road.

Now there is a plate that could be personalised to many drivers!

Has anyone seen one?

(for those who don't get it, there is usually at least one, for '8' read 'B')

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Taras sez, "British local authorities are queuing up to connect their CCTV cameras to a national system which tracks cars by their registration plates.
We live in a democracy and while freedom of travel is a human right, driving a car on a public highway is not. It's a privilege granted if you meet certain conditions - like passing a driving test, having insurance, MOT etc. etc.

Incidentally, yesterday I saw two cars, separately, with cherished number plates with 666 in them.

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I seem to have double posted - is it possible to delete? I see no delete button.

Anyway, I might as well use this undeletable space to say something!

Early numbers carried by relatively modern cars that I've seen which stick in my memory are E1, D3 and R8.

Edited by blankster

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Incidentally, yesterday I saw two cars, separately, with cherished number plates with 666 in them.

Nice to see Blair and Brown are keeping themselves busy

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Proper cherished number plates are a limited supply, so unless demand slumps I don't think they'll lose much value.

Of course demand could slump if having a cherished number becomes totally naff or the scheme is terminated.

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My own nominbation for the perfect bubble is modern art.

A large component of the value of a lot of modern art is underpinned by the belief that it will increase in value - in effect it's just a big decorative investment certificate you can put on your wall. The top works will probably retain value, but things like quick sketches done by the likes of Tracy Emin will lose value - how can they be worth more than a sketch done by L.S. Lowry, who was himself regraded as an enfant terrible (or just a terrible artist!) in his time?

Edited by blankster

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I was behind a car yesterday with a number plate beginning KN09, which aside from making me think...he must be the chap who bought a new car this year ( :lol: )...I also thought that if there are KN09s on the road there must also be many KN08s on the road.

Now there is a plate that could be personalised to many drivers!

Has anyone seen one?

(for those who don't get it, there is usually at least one, for '8' read 'B')

I just checked and KNO8 was never released. Probably being held back to auction. KN08 DOC would be great for my urologist friend

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funny, but I thought that EVERY car in the World has a private number plate...unique to each vehicle.

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Following on from Injin's money thread (the most recent one) I've been trying to come up with something that has zero intrinsic value but a high ascribed value and I've come up with private number plates.

Whenever I see a private number plate I instantly make a judgement about that person: d1ck,

or w4an ker,

or t05 5er.

Personalised registrations are dickheadness taken to its logical conclusion.

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You pay for a bog standard number plate when buying a new car anyway, so you'd have to discount the cost of that.

The starting cost of a DVLA one is relatively low - £250??? Not much more than an ipod and less than a flat screen tv. Paying 10s of thousands would appear a little bonkers however, but I imagine for the people who spend that amount it is relatively inconsequential.

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Whenever I see a private number plate I instantly make a judgement about that person: d1ck,

or w4an ker,

or t05 5er.

Personalised registrations are dickheadness taken to its logical conclusion.

Ive got one, just dont know which car to put it on....it relates to a ladies porno mag.

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Whenever I see a private number plate I instantly make a judgement about that person: d1ck,

or w4an ker,

or t05 5er.

Personalised registrations are dickheadness taken to its logical conclusion.

Perhaps you think everyone should drive a trabant, wear blue overalls and be called comrade?

edit:speeling

Edited by Red Kharma

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I think they're just a sign that people have run out of sensible things to spend their money on. Lower down the social scale, you see a lot of fluffy dice and pink steering wheel covers now. Again, just a sign that people have got money burning holes in their pockets. When people are struggling to afford the basics in life, they aren't going to blow cash on a 'pink princess' cockpit customisation set, are they?

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My own nominbation for the perfect bubble is modern art.

A large component of the value of a lot of modern art is underpinned by the belief that it will increase in value - in effect it's just a big decorative investment certificate you can put on your wall. The top works will probably retain value, but things like quick sketches done by the likes of Tracy Emin will lose value - how can they be worth more than a sketch done by L.S. Lowry, who was himself regraded as an enfant terrible (or just a terrible artist!) in his time?

Yes, that's maybe better. Most of it would be thrown away by somebody doing a house clearance!

funny, but I thought that EVERY car in the World has a private number plate...unique to each vehicle.

Pedant <_<

You could add premium or generic domain names to this list

http://www.webpronews.com/topnews/2008/02/...es-record-price

$1.1 M for cruises.co.uk

Surely they do have intrinsic value, like that 118 118 number (that I have never 'phoned) , as they are memorable. Not that much though.

I think they're just a sign that people have run out of sensible things to spend their money on. Lower down the social scale, you see a lot of fluffy dice and pink steering wheel covers now. Again, just a sign that people have got money burning holes in their pockets. When people are struggling to afford the basics in life, they aren't going to blow cash on a 'pink princess' cockpit customisation set, are they?

Zigzactly.

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