Monday, November 14, 2005

Blog of the Week: Jeff Matthews Is Not Making This Up

The $14.9 Million Small Pheasant Vase

I don’t know too much about Sotheby’s, the old-line auction house—save that its sales peaked during the 1999 bubble year and dropped four straight years; its CEO went to jail for conspiring with Christie’s to fix the market, and after a few years out of the headlines the company has rebounded along with the art market, which appears to be on fire.

So I found the recent earnings call interesting, both from a Sotheby’s-specific point of view, as well as the company's own world view from the vantage point of its auction business.

Most interesting was the company’s commentary on the exploding international art markets, particularly in Russia.

Now, I am not suggesting Sotheby’s is a good “Russia Play,” or “China Play,” or any other kind of play.

But I find it intriguing that Ariel Capital...



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