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Do art specialists form unbiased pre-sale estimates? An application for Picasso paintings


  • Corinna Czujack
  • Maria Fraga Martins


This work investigates whether art specialists provide good predictors of realized prices for Picasso paintings. A sample selection model is proposed to represent the decision of the seller and the price equation. The model is applied to data on 675 Picasso paintings for the period 1975-1994. It is found that the two auction houses, Sotheby's and Christie's, have given good predictions for the works that have been sold. However, for the unsold works, it would have been possible to give estimates better than those given by the salerooms. As a consequence they could perhaps have sold more paintings than they actually did.

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  • Corinna Czujack & Maria Fraga Martins, 2004. "Do art specialists form unbiased pre-sale estimates? An application for Picasso paintings," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(4), pages 245-249.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:apeclt:v:11:y:2004:i:4:p:245-249 DOI: 10.1080/13504850410001674894

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kniesner, Thomas J & Leeth, John D, 1991. "Compensating Wage Differentials for Fatal Injury Risk in Australia, Japan, and the United States," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 4(1), pages 75-90, January.
    2. Biddle, Jeff E & Zarkin, Gary A, 1988. "Worker Preferences and Market Compensation for Job Risk," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 70(4), pages 660-667, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Calin Valsan & Robert Sproule, 2008. "Reservation Prices And Pre-Auction Estimates: A Study In Abstract Art," The AMFITEATRU ECONOMIC journal, Academy of Economic Studies - Bucharest, Romania, vol. 10(24), pages 257-272, June.
    2. Hellmanzik, Christiane, 2016. "Historic art exhibitions and modern - day auction results," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 421-430.
    3. Calin Valsan & Robert Sproule, 2006. "Hedonic Models and Pre-Auction Estimates: Abstract Art Revisited," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 26(5), pages 1-10.
    4. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:26:y:2006:i:5:p:1-10 is not listed on IDEAS

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