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Showing posts from January, 2020

Lessons from the Artcurial "Important Watches" Auction

There are many contradictions in the month of January.  There are reasons for optimism.  In the northern hemisphere we've passed the winter equinox and our hours of daylight are lengthening.  The world is literally getting brighter.  Many major holidays have passed and the warm glow of that time has a halo effect.  And yet, there is also the knowledge that tax season is ahead and a bill with uncertain properties may come due.  The additional holiday spending can possibly weigh on the budget, out of precaution perhaps spending is slightly subdued.

The month's positive zeitgeist might suggest that it is a good time to hold an auction, particularly in the more mild climate of Monaco.  Monaco Indeed, the Artcurial auction house did just that on January 14, 2020 with their "Important Watches" auction.  But the results suggest that the more negative aspects of the month perhaps dominated.  I'll explain.

Online I was able to watch approximately 105 lots go under the ham…

Watchspotting Carlos Ghosan: Then and Now

Even if you swore off the news over the holidays, trading in your smartphone for a burner flip phone and cutting off your internet service at the telephone pole, you probably heard about Carlos Ghosn going on the lam.  Ghosn had previously served as the CEO of Renault and Nissan, simultaneously, and he was a giant in the automotive industry.  But he'd recently fallen from grace.  Ghosn was out on a $4.5 million bail having been jailed by Japanese authorities for almost four months as a result of alleged financial crimes.  After his bail was set Gosn was placed under house arrest. But on December 29, 2019, he walked out of his house, took a high speed train, boarded a private airplane, and ended up in Lebanon where he hopes to evade extradition. 

The press is covering this escape in excruciating detail, including a running debate over whether Ghosn hid in an oversized case for musical equipment in order to evade customs and security checkpoints.  Media have also noted that there i…