Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Frozen Antiquities Market

Alan Safani of Safani Gallery Inc. in New York has been interviewed about the impact of the "credit crunch" on the antiquities market (William Sherman, "It's worst of times for the finer things", Daily News October 19, 2008). Sherman writes that for Alan Safani, "there are some days when it just doesn't pay to go to work in this struggling economy".

Safani is quoted:
I could close up shop for five months and it wouldn't make any difference ... Nobody's buying. Nobody's selling. People are paralyzed by the uncertainty of what's going on in financial markets, not just here but around the world.

Safani anticipates the selling of collections of antiquities that have been purchased as investments:

Wealthy people will have to sell art to raise money because of the stock market losses, or because they lost their jobs, and I think for me and collectors in general, there will be a window of opportunity to buy great works of art at relatively low prices ...

It's the same as the fact there are tremendously undervalued stocks out there ... The question is, when do you jump in and buy?"


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