Quick resales have pumped some art auction prices up to new levels, fueling fears that art has become just another asset class for a vulgar type of collector who "flips" for fast profits. The New York Times investigated this perception with statistical analyses provided by two companies.
The data shows that it's business as usual in the art world. While the players may have changed to hedge fund millionaires and collectors from emerging markets worldwide, the game has not changed drastically from when the Japanese snapped up Impressionist masters in the '80s or the American Industrialists collected a century ago.
Postwar and contemporary art prices and rates of resale have indeed accelerated the last few years, but only slightly more than the mid-90s, pointing to a historical cycle rather than a market change. Read more at New York Times