As US stocks hit record highs, a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO offered by RM Sotheby's sold in Monterey, California on Saturday for a record $48.4 million - the highest price ever fetched at auction, and 25% higher than the previous record set in 2014 when a 1963 model sold for $38.1 million (a 1963 250 GTO reportedly sold in October 2013 for $52 million in a private transaction, however).
The seller, early Microsoft employee Greg Whitten, bought the car in 2000 when similar Ferraris were selling for around $10 million, according to Bloomberg. Whitten made out like a bandit.
And while markets are hitting record highs after a decade of taxpayer-fueled economic recovery, investors with the means and wherewithal to sink their money into Ferraris instead of the S&P 500 did far better, according to the Hagerty Ferrari price index which reveals that the majority of gains occurred between 2013 and 2015.
Even with dividends reinvested, Ferraris commanded a faster increase in value than listed U.S. companies since the end of 2009. Gains on the iconic car, though, have largely petered out over the last three years and U.S. stocks have outperformed. -Bloomberg
Making the case that high-end buyers are still willing to pony up in a frothy market, Bloomberg highlights the December 2017 sale of a Leonardo Da Vinci painting for $450 million (bought by Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, as it turns out), the most ever for a piece of fine art.
Their takeaway? Watch out:
It all shows market watchers should probably be getting worried, says Shane Oliver, a Sydney-based investment strategist at AMP Capital Investors Ltd., who wrote his PhD thesis on efficiency in markets and asset bubbles. -Bloomberg
"Exuberance is back in a big way," Oliver said. "The fact that people are paying record amounts for Ferraris and paintings and share markets are at record highs causes me to be a little bit more cautious"
Since most people can't exactly afford to invest in a $48.4 million Ferrari, much less insure it and god forbid even drive it - here are some more pictures of the recent sale via RM Sotheby's.
And just in case Ferraris aren't your thing, there's always a gold lambo!