[WoW] AH "antics"

Pages

So, I've been working the AH more lately, because I've gotten into buying relatively cheap Saronite, prospecting it, cutting some gems, and trying to make a profit.
I've read several - and continue to - AH-centric blogs, and there's a neat trick to be done, where you take a item that can be combined/uncombined, and make money due to a difference in the two markets.

Eternal/Crystallized Fire is a great example.
Here's what I have in my .txt file from today.

30 Eternal Fire - 350.00 11.6667g each 1.1667g per Crystallized fire LISTED 10 x Crystallized Fire - 1.99 SOLD 10 x Crystallized Fire - 1.99 - 0.0995 18.905 (revenue - 5% AH fee) 11.6667 (cost) +7.2383 (62% profit margin) LISTED 10 x Crystallized Fire - 1.99 LISTED 9 x Eternal Fire - 13.99 SOLD 9 x Eternal Fire - 13.99 - 0.6995 119.6145 (revenue - 5% AH fee) 105.0003 (cost) +14.6142 (13.9% profit margin)

So, by breaking the eternals into crystallized, I get about 48% more profit because I can sell 10 Crystallized for 19.99g but 1 Eternal will only sell for 13.99g.

You don't even have to get a great deal in /trade like I did for this to work.
Currently, Eternals are listing at 14-15g, Crystallized at ~25 per 10.

Crazy.

What other fun AH quirks have you guys noticed.

And yes, I realize this is because miners have an odd number of Crystallized fire that they want to use to smelt Titansteel. The smart miner would buy the etneral and break it down and just hang on to his Crystallized. C'est la vie.

The current one that's driving me nuts is that earthsiege diamonds simply don't sell, no matter how much I undercut

Are those the Northrend ones? I did well on the tank ones that add Block Value.
I wish my OP had formatted better. Edit: That's better.

duckilama wrote:

Are those the Northrend ones? I did well on the tank ones that add Block Value.
I wish my OP had formatted better. Edit: That's better.

Yea, they're one of the new metagems. The trick is that I'm trying to sell them uncut as I don't have a JC.

I'll cut them for you.
I'm usually logged on at around 8:45 or 9. Hit me up any time. Duclama (Ducmort, Ducarina, Duczap, Ducantha, or Ravith.)

Another fun thing in the AH is Netherweave for less than 3g per stack. Buy them up, Turn them into Heavy bandages, sell to Vendor for 3g. Easy money.
Auctioneer also has a filter in their searchUI to find "vendor" items, i.e. items that people have listed on the AH at a buyout of less than they could get selling the same item to a vendor.

Back in Burning Crusade, I made my 5k by buying an expensive JC (600 - 900g as I recall) recipe, then buying the gems as low as possible, cutting and selling them for as much as possible. Took about 2 or 3 weeks just buying, cutting, posting, raking it in.

Before that I was making bullet machines on my engineer, buying the ore and making the machines. The actual profit margin was better, but it was a smaller total sum and didn't sell as fast, so it was slower.

Before that I would try the Auctioneer's feature that scans for stuff thats listed too low so that I could buy and re-list. It worked ok, but it was also slow, and I felt a bit dirty

Now I just quest and sell the DE mats from all the crap I find, but its really not a great source of money. It's just easy.

I was doing the same thing a while back with the Cosmic Essences I got from DEing northrend stuff on my (still level 65) DK. Greaters were going for something like 25-29g, whereas the Lessers were going for about 14g if I recall. Made a tidy profit, but left myself without mats to level my enchanting.

This overall thing is called 'arbitrage'. You can make a little bit of money at it. Basically, you become the Invisible Hand in this case, seeing a profit, and moving the market back toward fair value. There are constant arbitrage opportunities in the AH, as old players that were covering a particular market get bored or find something more profitable. It's just something to watch for.

In general, the less 'refined' an item is, the more it's worth, which is a curious inversion from real life. One good example is cloth; in its raw form, it can be moved down several production paths, but at each further step of production, the number of uses it has drops, and the lower its value becomes. In real life, smelted bars are worth a LOT more than raw ore, but in WoW, the ore's worth more, because it can be used for prospecting in the raw state.

You also have the fact that people are willing to lose money to raise their skills, so many products cost less than the raw materials to make them.

Taken very broadly, only the items at the top of the skill trees are priced much above raw materials costs, and even then the delta is generally not high, unless the recipe is a very rare drop. High-volume markets like ammo and gems can make a nice steady profit, but none of them are fabulously profitable unless you get a cartel going.

We had one of those on Uther, back in the early days, on Sniper Scopes; the cartel was all selling them at 5g. That was very good money at the time, generally 15g profit or so a day. Doesn't sound like much now, but well worth it at the time.

The thing is, Mal, that *anybody* can freely change 1 Eternal Fire into 10 Crystallized Fires and vice versa. You don't need a miner to break them back down. *Everybody* can go back and forth.

"Antic" is probably the wrong word. Stupidity is probably better. People who never learned to divide or multiply by 10 are ... oh, god. I'm headed towards P&C with that train of thought. Hold me!

Whew. My point was that people are stupid. To quote a very funny movie:

Evil will always win, because good is dumb

Seriously. Dividing/multiplying by 10 is a very simple matter of moving the decimal left/right by one spot. There is no way in hell that knowing how to divide by 10 should be worth 50% more profit.

What. The. Hell?

In my experience, those glitches never last long. It may be that many of the more sophisticated traders aren't playing right now. There really isn't a lot in WoTLK to hold your interest after 80, and I suspect the smartest people may be dropping out.

This fire thing has been going on for a few weeks. And it shows no sign of correcting, especially since I'm not dumping. I'm taking 1 fire, breaking it, listing 10 crystallized at a time. When they sell, I do it again. Nobody seems to be coming in to join the fun.

And when someone does join in, I'll bet 100g that I'll be able to reverse the game and buy cheap(corrected) crystallized fire to sell eternals, since those will go up in price from my fellow invisible hands buying them to break and sell as crystalized.

Wrath's been out for months. This is exactly the kind of market that the invisible hand should have corrected by now, since there is ZERO barrier to entry in this market. Anyone with 14gold can get started here. Ok, so not zero barrier. 14g is a pretty small barrier, though. You only have to do 3 conversions+sales to double your play in this market. This is easily doable in a couple days of casual AH/mail checking.

I'm just astounded and dumbfounded that the market hasn't corrected itself. *Anybody* with 14g can get started. Yes, with *enough* people doing this, the markets will normalize so that 10 CF = 1 EF, but I ain't seeing it happen. I really think it's a matter of people with 7 CFs on hand wanting to turn it into an EF and paying a premium to do so.

If they took a moment to think about it, they would buy a (underpriced) EF, break it into 10 CFs, ... wait, no. See, even I didn't think long enough.
What they should do is SELL their 7 CFs at the inflated price and buy 1 EF at a much lower price. Basically, at current market prices, 7 CFs is equal value to 1 EF. So they come out with a net of 0g spent/gained in cash, but they come out 6g ahead in mat value. Well, more like 5g due to the AH cut, but still.

Truly a silly situation. The stupidity of crowds never ceases to amaze me.

The crystallized/eternal mismatch was even going on back when Wrath launched, from what I recall when I was selling them. I really couldn't figure that out, since anyone can convert either direction on them, as Duc's pointed out.

Yeah. It seems like Fire is the main one right now, which is why I mentioned that maybe shortsighted or rushed miners are the market, since I think you need Fire for the Titansteel cooldown.

There's a lot of money to be made up-selling. My steadiest money-makers right now:

Silk (buy at 5s or less) --> Bolt of silk cloth (sell at 40s) (I'll pull the same stunt with mageweave once I level my tailor).

Knothide leather scraps (5s or less) --> Knothide Armor Kits (4G) or Heavy Knothide Armor kits (12G)
... you can do the same with Knothide or Heavy Knothide leather. Another thing to look for is cheap armor kits (anything above heavy all the way to Heavy Borean)

Greens that DE into Nether Essence (the best-selling low/mid level essence at the moment; eternal and planar have gone into the crapper). Arcane and Illusion Dust sell well, too.

Firefin snapper (5s) --> Fire oil (30s)
Oily blackmouth (5s) -->Blackmouth oil (40s)

Frozen orbs: Buy at 90G, sell at 110G

The crystallized/eternal thing has been going on since the beginning of Wrath. I couldn't figure it out either. But for whatever reason my server seemed to correct itself, and I rarely could sustain any decent sales. Every time I bought an eternal something at, say, 40 gold and listed the crystallized at 60 silver, someone would undercut me at 50 silver, and someone would undercut them at around 40 silver. So I quit -- too much of a PITA for too little money.

But my biggest mover? .... *looks around to see if anyone's listening* ... It's pets. I've got an alt parked in Booty Bay who's on the lookout for Horde pets (brown snakes and especially dragonhawks and prairie dogs) --- buy at 6G, sell at 15G. I also have done well with Wood Frogs from the Darkmoon Faire. You have to love anything you can sell with a bazillion percent markup.

The problem with things like eternal xxx being priced differently than their motes is that it only takes one person to wreck that market. Since I know Duci logs on around 8:30, I could swoop in at 8:00 -- which is close to when I'm done playing anyway -- buy up all the mis priced motes and generally ruin the market for him. I don't, because I don't have interest in that market, but I watched one guildie absolutely destroy the prospecting business another guildie had for several weeks by single handedly inflating the price of saronite 40% in two days. He would just log on in the middle of the day, buy every piece of saronite under x price, and everyone else that logged on after had very slim pickings.

I've been pretty lucky in that the market I'm comfortable in -- fishing -- has relatively little competition, and I have enough cushion when someone comes in and undercuts me viciously, I can just buy his stuff and relist and still have it sell within 12 hours. People who only undercut me by a few silver to get the "top spot" on the AH don't affect my sales much, so I ignore them.

Greedy Goblin has a lot of really good AH based money making posts. His main has well over 100K gold, and he recently set up a DK on a low pop server and is making boat loads of money from niche market sales (bags and pets mostly).

Yeah, I don't plan on Eternals being my path to big money. It's just a stupidity thing I noticed - I probably actually got it from Greedy Goblin - I didn't believe it at first, but yes, it really works. For now. As you say, it only takes one or two people to ruin that.

By the same token, I bought my 30 eternals for well below the market and moving price on Eternals - someone in /trade was desperate to sell, I guess. My plan was to just flip them for the 3-5g/stack profit that flipping would give. But I tested the Crystallized thing. And there are people out there ignorant enough to buy the one and not the other. Now, if the conversion rate was not in the tooltip, or if only certain characters could do the conversion, or if the conversion had to be done in BRD where Dark Iron gets smelted.... ok, fine. The cost differential would make sense.

Basically, I'm making money because of stupid.
Plain and simple.

My other stuff doesn't baffle me. I totally get why Glyph of Levitate can get me 19, 20, 21 gold on the right day. I get it.
I understand why a Precise Scarlet Ruby can push 100 gold if I get really lucky. Totally get it.
I don't get why knowing that 1.99 x 10 > 14 should be making me money, but it is. Stupid market.

duckilama wrote:

I don't get why knowing that 1.99 x 10 > 14 should be making me money, but it is. Stupid market.

Maybe they are getting a government subsidy to buy crystalized fires, or maybe they are trying to keep up with their neighbors and have received huge sub prime loans in order to buy in an over priced market. This seems like a totally new idea that is bound to work. /sarcasm over.

duckilama wrote:

Basically, I'm making money because of stupid.

Ack! So you have been reading the Goblin!

And congrats on making the crystallized/eternal market work for you. The Goblin would be proud.

Greedy Goblin, MMOAuctioneer, WoWEcon, WoWEconomist, anything I can get my hand on. Especially if they might have a spreadsheet to share for recordkeeping.

From my GReader.
http://feeds.feedburner.com/GreedyGo...
http://tobolds.blogspot.com/feeds/po...
http://www.mmoauctioneer.com/feed/
http://feeds2.feedburner.com/Warcraf...
http://feeds.feedburner.com/wowecono...

These are just the economy/market/ah ones. And anybody reading Tobold or Greedy Goblin really should be at least getting the feed for the other if only to watch the mud throwing.

More linkage for the greedy goblins among us:

Just My Two Copper

Kaliope's WoW Crafting Blog

WoWconomics

Alterac Volley

Seth wrote:

I don't, because I don't have interest in that market, but I watched one guildie absolutely destroy the prospecting business another guildie had for several weeks by single handedly inflating the price of saronite 40% in two days. He would just log on in the middle of the day, buy every piece of saronite under x price, and everyone else that logged on after had very slim pickings.

Prospecting wasn't the only market he killed like that; Saronite>Titanium transmutes for Alchemists is another one. 10 days ago, Saronite was going for 20g/stack; it's generally up around 40g now. Freaking retarded.

Props to the guy who carved out a Saronite monopoly. My greedy bank alt salutes him.

I need to get some saronite and auction it off asap while this lasts for a nice "cheap" price. I love sabotaging monopolies!

Heck yeah. With my fishing trade I'll ocassionally get flooded with a person who undercuts enough to be a below my threshold but not so low that I can safely buy him out and relist for a comfortable profit. That guy makes a sizeable profit for a week or so while I hold my stockpile and switch the fish I sell. I've never found a person that stick to a specific fish / food for more than a week, so I can usually hike the prices back up the day his last AH leaves.

But the moral is -- that guy made a buttload of cash for a couple weeks. =)

Seth wrote:

But the moral is -- that guy made a buttload of cash for a couple weeks. =)

Bingo!

Someone else wants to go through the trouble of making a monopoly, I'm going to get myself a cut of the action!

The auction house is my favorite PVP Battleground.

you guys are awesome with the links to money making in game

Farscry wrote:

I need to get some saronite and auction it off asap while this lasts for a nice "cheap" price.

If you keep Auctioneer up to date and know the market you're in, you can make Big Profit this way. Even if you're selling at 150 percent of normal, you're making excellent profit. And if the monopolist buys it, all the better.

Farscry wrote:

The auction house is my favorite PVP Battleground. :twisted:

That's why my bank alt is a rogue. Seems appropriate.

Its not just WoW. Its MMO auction houses in general. I've never seen an MMO AH where I couldn't make money off of stupid, time and again.

Even Eve Online, you can find niche markets and churn out profit margins of 100%s if not 1000%s . At least in Eve the niches get flooded out fast, though, so get in and get out before it crashes. In WoW, it would normally take weeks before the last of the profit was gone, if you were patient.

AH PvP, gotta love it.

For the inscribers out there(as long as I'm giving out the things I do to make money )

Avg # Inks per 20stack of Adder's Tongue = 6
Cost of Parchment for 6 Glyphs = 3g

Cost of Northrend Glyph = ( Adder's Tongue Cost / 6 ) + 3

I generally buy Adder's Tongue at anything below 25g. Let's go with 24g/stack.

24 / 6 + 3 = 7g

So any glyphs that you can reliably sell for more than 7.3685g are profitable, ignoring time, assuming you can reliably buy Adder's Tongue for 24g.
(7 / 0.95 = 7.3684ish : this accounts for the AH cut of 5% with a 0.0002g buffer to account for rounding/truncating)

When looking at my tradeskill window, I generally ignore anything with a Market Price below 10-12, and am wary of anything with a negative Moving Price percentage. I really aim for the 18-28g area, of which there are several.

I haven't looked at Outland herb prices at all, nor the glyphs produced from them. The margin may be even better on those, even if the absolute prices are lower.

(Cost per Stack / 6 ) + Fudge Number(parchment, AH cut, relists) = minimum price

Enjoy.

LtWarhound wrote:

Its not just WoW. Its MMO auction houses in general. I've never seen an MMO AH where I couldn't make money off of stupid, time and again.

Even Eve Online, you can find niche markets and churn out profit margins of 100%s if not 1000%s . At least in Eve the niches get flooded out fast, though, so get in and get out before it crashes. In WoW, it would normally take weeks before the last of the profit was gone, if you were patient.

AH PvP, gotta love it.

I've found that in EVE you're making money off of lazy more often than stupid though. Mission runners paying 50-100% markup on ammo is the big one that I love.

On my horde banker, I've been making money from Savory Deviate Delight (less lately, people aren't selling the fish -- I have one alt with the cooking recipe), Deadly Blunderbuss (used for a Horde quest in Ashenvale). I was also reasonably profitable with the Earthsiege Diamonds my alchemist skilled up on. I keep my eye on prices for spider's silk; if I can get it at the right price, Robes of Arcana are OK sellers.

And I always scan for vendorable items, but I'm not the only one on the realm doing it, so I have to get lucky with my bid times, or hope someone's been foolish enough to list a buy-now price for less than the vendor value.

I should run my secondary bank alt over to the neutral AH, and see how I can do with pet sales. I have alts parked in easy reach of cockroaches, snakes and prairie dogs...

Pages