The (Auction) House Doesn’t Always Win

Christie’s and Sotheby’s Woo Big Sellers With a Cut

When Christie’s sold Jeff Koons’s “Balloon Dog (Orange)”for $58.4 million in November, it seemed as if the auction house had just earned a pretty penny.  After all, Christie’s, like other auction houses, typically charge commissions to buyers and sellers, which for high-priced works might be an eighth to a quarter of the gavel price.

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