Napa, oil on canvas and mixed media, 24 X 18 © Kathleen Hall
Napa, oil on canvas and mixed media, 24 X 18 © Kathleen Hall

This recent NPR article, The Art of Investing: The Rewards Aren’t Always Financial, is interesting. NPR’s Uri Berliner writes:

“The Internet is driving the ability of the masses to do their own research, do their own due diligence just as they do with a stock — really enabling individuals to determine and place their own value on individual pieces of art,” Price says.


Why invest in art? One reason, Price says, is that fine art has a proven track record as a good choice during hard times. “It outperforms in times of economic turmoil and trouble. It has outperformed during all of the wars of the 20th century. It’s outperformed during the last 27 recessions.”


Like any other asset, the market for art goes through ups and downs. Over the past 60 years, the total return on art has been very similar to the return on the S&P 500-stock index, says Mike Moses, a retired New York University business school professor who co-created the Mei Moses World All Art Index. The index tracks repeat auction sales of fine art.


“If you use the last 30 years, the S&P substantially outperforms art,” Moses says. “If you look at the most recent eight [to] 10 years, art has outperformed the S&P.”


When you purchase art, do you think of it as a financial investment? A reflection of who you are? Or, do you just buy a piece of art because it speaks to you?


Share your thoughts in the comments.


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