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Art Market Inefficiency

Author

Listed:
  • Geraldine David
  • Kim Oosterlinck
  • Ariane Szafarz

Abstract

Art is often used as an investment vehicle. Given the importance of market efficiency in finance, we use a large auction-based index to test whether the art market is weakly efficient. Evidence reveals that returns on artworks exhibit high positive auto-correlation. We attribute this result to price truncation resulting from unobservable reserve prices in auctions. We conclude that the art market is not efficient, mainly because price formation is opaque to outsiders who lack information on unsold artworks.

Suggested Citation

  • Geraldine David & Kim Oosterlinck & Ariane Szafarz, 2013. "Art Market Inefficiency," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/145737, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  • Handle: RePEc:ulb:ulbeco:2013/145737
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Orley Ashenfelter & Kathryn Graddy, 2011. "Sale Rates and Price Movements in Art Auctions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(3), pages 212-216, May.
    2. Andrew W. Lo, A. Craig MacKinlay, 1988. "Stock Market Prices do not Follow Random Walks: Evidence from a Simple Specification Test," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 1(1), pages 41-66.
    3. Frey, Bruno S. & Eichenberger, Reiner, 1995. "On the rate of return in the art market: Survey and evaluation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(3-4), pages 528-537, April.
    4. Ashenfelter, Orley, 1989. "How Auctions Work for Wine and Art," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 23-36, Summer.
    5. Dickey, David A & Fuller, Wayne A, 1981. "Likelihood Ratio Statistics for Autoregressive Time Series with a Unit Root," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(4), pages 1057-1072, June.
    6. Jianping Mei & Michael Moses, 2002. "Art as an Investment and the Underperformance of Masterpieces," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1656-1668, December.
    7. Collins, Alan & Scorcu, Antonello & Zanola, Roberto, 2009. "Reconsidering hedonic art price indexes," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 104(2), pages 57-60, August.
    8. Bocart, Fabian & Oosterlinck, Kim, 2011. "Discoveries of fakes: Their impact on the art market," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 113(2), pages 124-126.
    9. Luc Renneboog & Christophe Spaenjers, 2013. "Buying Beauty: On Prices and Returns in the Art Market," Management Science, INFORMS, pages 36-53.
    10. Goetzmann, William N, 1993. "Accounting for Taste: Art and the Financial Markets over Three Centuries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1370-1376, December.
    11. Throsby, David, 1994. "The Production and Consumption of the Arts: A View of Cultural Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 1-29.
    12. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", pages 129-137.
    13. Fama, Eugene F, 1970. "Efficient Capital Markets: A Review of Theory and Empirical Work," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 25(2), pages 383-417, May.
    14. Pesando, James E, 1993. "Art as an Investment: The Market for Modern Prints," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1075-1089, December.
    15. repec:pri:cepsud:214ashenfelter is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Erdos, Péter & Ormos, Mihály, 2010. "Random walk theory and the weak-form efficiency of the US art auction prices," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 1062-1076, May.
    17. Luc Renneboog & Christophe Spaenjers, 2013. "Buying Beauty: On Prices and Returns in the Art Market," Management Science, INFORMS, pages 36-53.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Pénasse, Julien & Renneboog, Luc & Spaenjers, Christophe, 2014. "Sentiment and art prices," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 122(3), pages 432-434.
    2. Goodness C. Aye & Tsangyao Chang & Wen-Yi Chen & Rangan Gupta & Mark Wohar, 2016. "Testing the Efficiency of the Art Market using Quantile-Based Unit Root Tests with Sharp and Smooth Breaks," Working Papers 201625, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.
    3. Marie Briere & Kim Oosterlinck & Ariane Szafarz, 2013. "Virtual Currency, Tangible Return: Portfolio Diversification with Bitcoin," Working Papers CEB 13-031, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    4. repec:eee:reveco:v:51:y:2017:i:c:p:283-294 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Zhitkov, Konstantin & Ratnikova, Tatiana, 2014. "The construction of hedonic price indices for fauvists’ paintings," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 35(3), pages 59-85.
    6. Gallais-Hamonno, Georges & Hoang, Thi-Hong-Van & Oosterlinck, Kim, 2015. "Informational efficiency of the clandestine and official gold markets in Paris," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 126(C), pages 28-30.
    7. repec:eee:ecolet:v:159:y:2017:i:c:p:201-203 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Kim Oosterlinck & Jeremy Simon, 2015. "Financial Repression and Bond Market Efficiency: the Case of Italy during World War II," Working Papers CEB 15-001, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    9. Aye, Goodness C. & Gil-Alana, Luis A. & Gupta, Rangan & Wohar, Mark E., 2017. "The efficiency of the art market: Evidence from variance ratio tests, linear and nonlinear fractional integration approaches," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 283-294.
    10. Urquhart, Andrew, 2016. "The inefficiency of Bitcoin," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 148(C), pages 80-82.
    11. Penasse, J.N.G. & Renneboog, L.D.R., 2014. "Bubbles and Trading Frenzies : Evidence from the Art Market," Discussion Paper 2014-068, Tilburg University, Tilburg Law and Economic Center.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • Z11 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economics of the Arts and Literature
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • D44 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Auctions
    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations

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