Surprise! In response to the recent financial panicmeltdowncrash, people are being more cautious about spending millions of dollars on works of art. It's not a disaster yet—although sales were slow and "softened" at London's recent Sotheby's and Christie's auctions (as well as at last week's Frieze Art Fair ), there are still big works selling for big prices. Weirdly, American buyers were up by 20% this year. However, collectors used to the over-the-moon sales that have dominated the art market for the past few years will have to lower their standards "by as much as a third." Or, as an art dealer put it in today's Wall Street Journal : "Before, collectors had to take whatever art they could get from dealers and auction houses, but now those collectors are saying, 'Kneel down and ask nicely.'" Bet they're enjoying that.