Content Analysis: Key Factors for Determining Cigar Value


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the below is from a 2016 USA insurance assessor article.  

Content Analysis: Key Factors for Determining Cigar Value

https://www.claimsjournal.com/news/national/2016/01/19/268276.htm

 

the article is fairly rudimentary but one of the questions at the end piqued my interest. 

 

Q Very interesting article about cigar valuation. I have a question regarding Cuban cigars. While prior to 2015, Cuban cigars were illegal to own here in the states, they have been readily available from vendors based in Europe & the UK since the embargo was initiated.

So how would you value a humidor full of Cuban Cigars acquired illegally between the date of the embargo and the date of the $100 limit? Would it be a total loss since the cigars were acquired illegally or would there be some type of value assigned to them?

Thanks

A The humidor would have value, so not a total loss. However, the cigars would have no value as they would be considered contraband due to when and how they were obtained.

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15 minutes ago, smokin.joe said:

Unless one was required to show date of purchase, who would know when the cigars were acquired? Even then, a buyer is likely not to care if they were bought prior to 2015. 

I think you can assume that the insurance company would want to see proof of purchase ;)

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If the humi was Cuban and a HSA or Tabacuba/Cubatabaco release, it would also be illegal and would still be. That's not allowed to be imported under the new rules or any rule from the Embargo onward as it is not a good produced by an independent Cuban entrepreneur. Although possibly made by an independent Cuban entrepreneur, it was commissioned and subsequently owned by either HSA or Tabacuba. Even if it could have sneaked through under that guideline, the good must be for personal use and not sold, and therefore can have no assessed cash value. 

The issue isn't whether the cigars or humi are illegal. In fact, it was not ever illegal to own or possess Cuban goods in the US (unless sold or given away by the Cuban gov't or a Cuban GSE like Tabacuba or HSA.) Someone may have traveled to Cuba legally at any time after 1962 and could possibly have legally brought back the old $100 limit/two boxes worth of CCs and gifted them to someone else. Same with a Cuban trinket or a humi (assuming the independent Cuban entrepreneur clause is adhered to.) Totally legal. No way for the government to know whether any particular Cuban good was imported legally or illegally. The issue is that since it is and always has been illegal to sell Cuban goods in the US their actual assessed value must be zero. They can be given away or traded, but not sold. 

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22 minutes ago, NSXCIGAR said:

If the humi was Cuban and a HSA or Tabacuba/Cubatabaco release, it would also be illegal and would still be. That's not allowed to be imported under the new rules or any rule from the Embargo onward as it is not a good produced by an independent Cuban entrepreneur. It is commissioned and owned by either HSA or Tabacuba. Even if it could have sneaked through under that guideline, the good must be for personal use and not sold, and therefore can have no assessed cash value. 

The issue isn't whether the cigars or humi are illegal. In fact, it was not ever illegal to own or possess Cuban goods in the US. Someone may have traveled to Cuba legally at any time after 1962 and could possibly have legally brought back the old $100 limit/two boxes worth of CCs and gifted them to someone else. Same with a Cuban trinket or a humi (assuming the independent Cuban entrepreneur clause is adhered to.) Totally legal. No way for the government to know whether any particular Cuban good was imported legally or illegally. The issue is that since it is and always has been illegal to sell Cuban goods in the US their actual assessed value must be zero. They can be given away or traded, but not sold. 

I’m not sure you could bring back $100 of Cuban goods before January 2015. Guys who used to go to fishing events in the 1990s technically weren’t allowed to spend a single US dollar in Cuba.

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2 hours ago, bpm32 said:

I’m not sure you could bring back $100 of Cuban goods before January 2015. Guys who used to go to fishing events in the 1990s technically weren’t allowed to spend a single US dollar in Cuba.

You still can't officially spend a single US dollar in Cuba. You have to convert it to CUC

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The $100 exemption for licensed US travelers had been a longstanding policy to my recollection. 

I'm finding more info, but here's a treasury.gov link from 2004 stating it:

  - OFAC is working with the State Department to review the current authorization which allows licensed travelers to import up to $100 worth of Cuban origin goods, including cigars and rum, as accompanied baggage.  

https://www.treasury.gov/press-center/press-releases/Pages/js1161.aspx

Hard to find official documentation of this past policy as all the US gov't sites reflect only current policy.

As far as spending any money in Cuba, yes, a licensed traveler to Cuba could apparently spend up to the officially declared US State Dept per diem of $183 from at least as far back as 2000. 

I wish the sources were better, but again, this is all prior to the 2014 changes:

http://www.usacubatravel.com/restriction.htm

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3 hours ago, bpm32 said:

I’m not sure you could bring back $100 of Cuban goods before January 2015. Guys who used to go to fishing events in the 1990s technically weren’t allowed to spend a single US dollar in Cuba.

They probably were not US State Dept licensed travelers. I doubt a fishing event would have qualified. They would have been traveling to Cuba through a third country or boating there from the US illegally and would therefore have been prohibited from returning with any Cuban goods. Their boats would probably have been intercepted and inspected on the way back from Cuba and any Cuban goods found would have been big trouble.

I'm also not sure what the 2014/2015 policy announcement was all about which allowed the $100 exemption. That exemption should already have existed. I'm thinking that at some point between 2004-2014 it was eliminated. I know the Bush administration tightened some Cuba policies and perhaps this was one of them. But as I said, I recall the $100 exemption as always being the policy and certainly in the early 2000s.

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Considering the article for a moment, my interest waned at the awe of an extensive 300 cigar collection.

Why is it that cigars in general, entice so many people that know nothing about them to offer advice and learning material regarding them?

-the Pig

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11 hours ago, NSXCIGAR said:

They probably were not US State Dept licensed travelers. I doubt a fishing event would have qualified. They would have been traveling to Cuba through a third country or boating there from the US illegally and would therefore have been prohibited from returning with any Cuban goods. Their boats would probably have been intercepted and inspected on the way back from Cuba and any Cuban goods found would have been big trouble.

I'm also not sure what the 2014/2015 policy announcement was all about which allowed the $100 exemption. That exemption should already have existed. I'm thinking that at some point between 2004-2014 it was eliminated. I know the Bush administration tightened some Cuba policies and perhaps this was one of them. But as I said, I recall the $100 exemption as always being the policy and certainly in the early 2000s.

Ah okay, my apologies then. I think the fishing thing would have been back in the mid or late 1990s(?). I’m from WA State and it was big news when the US allowed WA State apples to be sold to Cuba as long as they paid cash. If I’m remembering right a local news crew from Seattle followed a bunch of US fishermen who’d been allowed to enter the yearly fishing competition. The stipulation was that they weren’t allowed to spend any money even though they used US dollars in Cuba (before the CUCs were introduced).

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7 hours ago, PigFish said:

Considering the article for a moment, my interest waned at the awe of an extensive 300 cigar collection.

Why is it that cigars in general, entice so many people that know nothing about them to offer advice and learning material regarding them?

-the Pig

Presumably the constant drive for internet “content”, an increasingly desperate community of traditional journalists, and our own Gell-Mann Amnesia. Also, cigars are a weird subject that most people would assume are not complex, so there’s probably some Dunning-Kruger effect in there as well.

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