Art wealth management course comes with CE credits from CFP Board

The program is an introduction to the art market from an investment perspective

Nov 7, 2018 @ 4:34 pm

By Sarah Min

The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards will provide three hours of continuing education credit that counts toward CFP certification for a new online art wealth management course.

The program, created by New York-based Tang Art Advisory and online art community One Art Nation, is an introductory course on the art market from an investment perspective. It is the only active continuing education program that focuses solely on art wealth management, according to Mary Kay Svedberg, director of education at the CFP Board.

"There's a lot of misconception on art and how different it is from the financial market, so we wanted to make a program for financial managers to give them an opportunity to learn what the art market really is," said Annelien Bruins, chief executive officer of Tang Art Advisory, who is also acting as the lead for the new program.

It's a market that has grown substantially. Sales in the global art market reached $63.7 billion in 2017, up 12% from the previous year, according to a 2018 study from Art Basel and UBS. The U.S. made up the largest share, accounting for 42% of the sales by value.

Regardless, Ms. Bruins said that it's a market that is opaque for most financial advisers. A 2017 art and finance report from Deloitte found that 88% of wealth managers felt their firms should offer art investing services, but most do not have the in-house expertise.

"If someone doesn't know what they're doing, then it can be a really bad thing for the investor," Ms. Bruins said.

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Learning about the art market can help financial advisers understand how art is priced, what the risks are and how to take into account tax strategies for estate planning. It can also give financial advisers the know-how to help art collectors leverage their current holdings so they don't have to go out and buy more for investment purposes.

"A lot of high-net-worth clients, they buy art, they want to buy well, but that's not the primary motive. The primary motive for most collectors is they still buy the work because they love it," said Ms. Bruins. "They are emotionally invested in it. It's not a pure investment motive."

Ms. Bruins first approached One Art Nation with the idea for a program specifically for financial professionals in 2017. The online course consists of five 30-minute modules that cover topics including an overview of the art market, pricing and appraisals, legal aspects of art transactions, risk factors, art investments and finance solutions in wealth management and estate planning.

The course instructors include professionals from Bonhams Auctioneers, U.S. Trust, ARIS Title Insurance Corp. and Schindler Cohen & Hochman. The program costs $495.

(More: Masterworks is opening fine art investing to the masses)

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