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Market Manipulation?


Thraka's Avatar


Thraka
09.26.2013 , 09:54 AM | #1
So for the past few weeks on my server, I have been noticing some bizarre behavior in the GTN. I sell crafting mats fairly regularly, and there is a small group (or a player with a lot of alts) who is working extremely hard to lower prices.

It's not casual, or a mistake. It's the same names, over and over. They hit all price ranges(99 stacks, 20s, 10s, 5's, etc.) with undercuts of hundreds per unit, and in materials from all gathering skills. I have had them buy my stuff and reposted it immediately for nearly half price at times. This is a consistent thing, and has the effect has been to A) force gatherers to make substantially less money for their time, and B) to cause drastic shortages in the market at times.

So, what is the game here? Drive other gatherers out of the market, then raise prices with a monopoly? Seems a bad plan, since other gatherers can always resume gathering if prices improve. I can't quite work out what the use of deliberately bombing the market could be.

magecutter's Avatar


magecutter
09.26.2013 , 10:39 AM | #2
Quote: Originally Posted by Thraka View Post
So for the past few weeks on my server, I have been noticing some bizarre behavior in the GTN. I sell crafting mats fairly regularly, and there is a small group (or a player with a lot of alts) who is working extremely hard to lower prices.

It's not casual, or a mistake. It's the same names, over and over. I have had them buy my stuff and re-post it immediately for nearly half price at times. This is a consistent thing, and the effect has been to A) force gatherers to make substantially less money for their time, and B) to cause drastic shortages in the market at times.
I know some players who really hate the (as they see it) ridiculously high prices mats can go for and will sell at very low prices just to make a point and maybe help a crafter out.

also, it's not uncommon to see people under cut prices by a huge amount to make a quick sale or will list at the price the GTN suggests when you first place the items in the sales slot. I tend to look at these as rookie mistakes and am happy to snap up these deals a fast as I can.

However, what is weird is the buying at a higher price and then re-posting at nearly half what they bought it for... very strange.

I would think that they can't keep that up for long unless they have a huge credit reserve or make a lot of creds from other sources.
because the markets will fluctuate (sometimes wildly) I think all you can do is ride this one out. maybe they are trying to make a point or just having fun upsetting the market for a while.

if you can afford it, re-buy the mats at the lower price and then re-post at your normal price. see if they keep doing it.
you'll get the price you're asking and won't have to spend as much time farming. a total win for you.

again, I doubt they can keep this up long term but if you're careful and play it smart you might be able to turn this to your advantage -

hope this helps and good luck -

psandak's Avatar


psandak
09.26.2013 , 10:52 AM | #3
I agree with Magecutter. If they are buying your product and then reposting at half price, buy it from them and repost it at normal pricing.

I know one person on these forums who would call that greedy, but I do not really care what he thinks

Thraka's Avatar


Thraka
09.26.2013 , 11:26 AM | #4
Yes, I can and do buybacks and buyouts. But I am trying to work out what this guy or guys are actually trying to accomplish. It would take a fairly serious investment and perhaps a counter-cartel to actually counteract what he is doing, though, so I am trying to work out his plan before trying to organize one.

I have not quite decided if this is a long term reduce prices and then raise them after building stockpiles, or if it is actually some kind of 'white knight' stupidity. Does anyone see a method to this? Does it follow any know 'plans' for commodities?

magecutter's Avatar


magecutter
09.26.2013 , 12:38 PM | #5
Quote: Originally Posted by Thraka View Post
Yes, I can and do buybacks and buyouts. But I am trying to work out what this guy or guys are actually trying to accomplish. It would take a fairly serious investment and perhaps a counter-cartel to actually counteract what he is doing, though, so I am trying to work out his plan before trying to organize one.

I have not quite decided if this is a long term reduce prices and then raise them after building stockpiles, or if it is actually some kind of 'white knight' stupidity. Does anyone see a method to this? Does it follow any know 'plans' for commodities?
"'white knight' stupidity"... lol, had to laugh at that one -
other than trying to drive everyone else out of that market nitch or just screwing up the market for a while I can't think of any good reason to do it.

my guild leader is in a market fight atm with 2 or 3 sellers who want to control certain sections of the GTN. what they don't know is she has a huge war chest (well over 150 million in creds) and they really have no chance, long term, of ever driving the prices their way. (she also has several alts that do nothing but craft and gather and will sell under many different names in many different areas of the GTN, for her the credits just keep rolling in).

she has said she's seen this many times before and will either under cut them (even if it means a small loss) or buy up the deals they offer and stock pile the items till the market returns to normal or will do a combination of both until they run out of creds or get bored with the whole thing.

just like in real life the market is a long term endeavor. I wouldn't worry too much about this guy, and if he keeps buying high and selling low he'll end up bleeding him self dry. you can help bleed him if you can keep posting at your normal price and he keeps buying.

lastly, consider sending some polite in game emails to other people you know that sell in these areas, see what they think about it and maybe create the cartel you mentioned to deal with this guy.

ltownatrain's Avatar


ltownatrain
09.26.2013 , 01:23 PM | #6
Quote: Originally Posted by psandak View Post
I agree with Magecutter. If they are buying your product and then reposting at half price, buy it from them and repost it at normal pricing.

I know one person on these forums who would call that greedy, but I do not really care what he thinks
I agree. Let's be honest if the are stupid enough to buy yours and sell it at half then let's be honest this is market manipulation that works in your favor. Because A) you already made credits from them buying it from you and B) you can now rebuy it cheaper and make more money on the exact same item.

Personally, if they are stupid enough to keep doing this then they are stupid enough to part with their credits many times over.

This also used to happen to me when I first started playing the thing is though I would just take the credits happily and list my units cheaper than them. Why? Because I always know on mats what the cheapest I can see it for is and still clear a profit (I have star-ships full of mats ) so I will just go lower until the idiot purposely driving the market down can't make a profit and then when they get out I un-list my items and put them back at a point that myself and the rest of the regular sellers can make a good profit again.

MeNaCe-NZ's Avatar


MeNaCe-NZ
09.26.2013 , 06:57 PM | #7
What investment do you need to drive these guys out of the market? They buy your amts for half your price thus you got your price, can buy your mats back again for half of it and relist it again for the original price whilst keeping that original 50% cut from them buying it off you in the first place.

What server and what mats as I'll be all over that lol.

If they are doing it en masse as in buying off everyone and yo ucan't afford to rebuy everything they've bought just post what server and mats in this thread and everyone who reads it will soon help sort the market out for you because who doesn't want to make 100's of thousands of easy credits off these people?

Cezablythe's Avatar


Cezablythe
09.27.2013 , 06:38 AM | #8
If they are buying your items purely to sell at a lower price... I would say they are people who have Bought game credits.

They want to get rid of the credits that have been just given to them, by cycling their purchased Credits with legitimate credits Via Under sale on the GTN, they dont get all the credits they originally paid for, but the credits they do own now, are not illegally purchased Credits.

and no.... i don't do it.... (i have done in WOW, but here i just use the Packs to make game gold by selling multiple packs for much cheaper than the GTN)

just my insights

PifferPuff's Avatar


PifferPuff
09.27.2013 , 07:12 AM | #9
Buy at full; sell at half? Am I reading that right? Wow!! What a lolocaust of stupidity.

OP, I have to agree with everyone here. Buy your stuff back @ half price, and then sell @ full price. And be quick about it. If the guy(s) is/are stupid enough, then they will soon run out of credits, while you soak up profits. Or, if they aren't that stupid, they will see what you are doing, and stop doing what they are doing.

I wish I had your problem OP. That's just too funny LOL

Larkie's Avatar


Larkie
09.27.2013 , 09:53 AM | #10
Sorry, no, I don't believe they're buying your mats and reselling at half the price - I think you're wrong or lying though I'd assume just wrong.

As for selling at substantially lower prices.. I don't know what the actual prices are but I wouldn't be surprised if they're perfectly reasonable prices. What a lot of resource sellers think of as "normal" prices are actually quite atrocious if you expect anyone to be able to craft and sell their items for a profit.