New Report Finds Loans to Collectors Make Up 90 Percent of the $20 Billion Art Finance Market

artnet News | Tim Schneider

It may not take rigorous number crunching to feel confident that, in the art market, the rich keep getting richer. But we now have a new study to define the contours of that trend more clearly than ever—and some of its findings suggest the divide between the apex and the rest of the field is starker than even close observers may have realized. Timed to the opening of its second annual spring fair in New York, the European Fine Art Foundation (TEFAF) this morning released its overview of art-backed loans and the funding practices of galleries and dealers. Commissioned from Anders Petterson, the founder of art-industry analytics firm ArtTactic and a previous author of Deloitte’s annual Art & Finance Report, TEFAF’s Art Dealer Finance 2018 views this niche from multiple angles to try to provide the most comprehensive picture of reality.

Two prongs converge to deliver the findings. The first consists of a survey of 142 galleries and dealers admitted to TEFAF’s art fairs worldwide—more than 50 percent of all participants—conducted in January and February 2018. The second consists of a series of interviews with what the report terms “key finance providers” in the field, ranging from private and commercial banks to firms specializing in art-secured lending (also known as loans where art is used as collateral). Among the study’s key results, the following four best capture the tailwinds pushing the market’s highest fliers even further ahead. Just keep in mind that all estimates below are considered likely, but not certain. As always, beware of the unknowns…read more

Image: This year’s TEFAF New York Spring fair. Photo: Kirsten Chilstrom.