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Christie's Winning the Sotheby's-Christie's Rivalry - At Least for Now

Is Christie's winning the ongoing Sotheby's-Christie's duel? The New York Times seems to think so, according to this article about the rivalry.

Christie's posted about $1 billion (UDS) more than Sotheby's in '...auction and private sales for the first half of 2015'.

The article correctly points out that there's more than a little bit of 'apples and oranges' in this comparison; Sotheby's, for example is public and accountable to its shareholders, which Christie's is privately-held, so there are different reporting standards being followed.  In addition, Sotheby's is pushing ahead in some areas, like classic cars, and it seems to be moving forward with improved technology. Christie's, however, continues to hold the lead in the contemporary art market, and that makes all the difference.

It'll take another year or so before we know if the changes in Sotheby's management are making a difference, but meantime, no-one at either of these giants is headed for the poorhouse just yet, and it's fun for the rest of us to watch and speculate from the safety of our armchairs.


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