Saturday, 26 October 2013

Moving into the PLEX market

A PLEX is a fairly valuable item that (for such an expensive item) moves in high volume. PLEX are currently going for over 600 million ISK with around 3,000 a day being sold in Jita alone.

No doubt many of those sales were actually the same PLEX sold twice (bought and resold on station at a profit) but even if we assume half were bought for resale (I doubt it's that many) that'd still leave 1,500 a day moving on Jita.

What is PLEX?

A Pilot License Extension (PLEX) is an item that adds 30 days of game time to your EVE Online account. PLEX can be purchased with real money from CCP's website here. PLEX can be converted from any game time code and can be traded on the EVE market in game.

Players can also use PLEX to:

Perform a Character Transfer.
Perform a Character Resculpt.
Convert PLEX to Aurum and use Aurum to purchase apparel and cosmetic accessories for characters from the Noble Exchange.
Enable Dual Character Training for 30 days.

Of course PLEX are often used to trade real money for ISK. Many players will buy a PLEX for real money, then sell it on the market for ISK.

It's great for players with plenty of real cash because it saves them time grinding ISK in game and it's great for those with plenty of playing time (and ISK) because they don't have to spend any real money to pay for their subscription(s).

That's a win win situation for everyone involved. It's something anyone can do without breaking any rules and risking getting banned like they would with RMT (Real Money Trading) transactions.

The PLEX market

On the main hubs and many secondary hubs the PLEX market is heavily camped by no-lifers and bots constantly posting and updating buy/sell orders. Combined with a high price this makes it a tough market to break into, especially on the busier stations.

In the past I avoided trading PLEX because they're so heavily camped and tie up a fairly significant amount of ISK. I bought PLEX one at a time and only when necessary to pay for account subscriptions or dual training.

I never bought PLEX for resale. Lately, with 12 accounts and usually at least 3 dual training I've been buying a PLEX about every 2 days on average and getting to know the PLEX market in many different regions better.

My Strategy

I can buy PLEX at good prices in several regions fairly reliably so I'm going to buy a few extra for resale and see if I can resell them in a reasonable timeframe. I've already bought two in about half an hour, posted 1 for resale at an 11% profit and posted a 3rd buy order.

So far I seem to be buying them faster than I can resell them on station but it's too early to be certain of that. If it turns out I can't resell them quickly enough that's no big deal, I got them at a good price and I'll use them to sub accounts in a few days anyhow. Or alternately, my buy price is good enough I could always transport to Jita and sell to buy orders there at a small profit.

I'm going to leave that character logged in for the rest of the day and semi-camp PLEX.

Semi-camping meaning I'm not going to just sit there obsessively checking for cuts every 5 minutes but I'll check it several times throughout the night and cut when necessary. For example, every half hour or so while writing this post and doing other things on the computer, or later tonight during commercial breaks while watching football (Go Riders!).

Assuming it works out well I plan to start buying and selling PLEX in multiple regions. I'd drop a whole bunch of lower end, less valuable items and increase my presence in the PLEX market. That should take far less time and effort on my part than working hundreds of less valuable items does and hopefully it'll increase my ISK per hour too.

Note: October is traditionally when PLEX prices are at their highest. This is when you want to buy PLEX for quick resale. Sitting on them in speculation of even higher prices later would probably be an expensive mistake.

7 comments:

  1. It's a dangerous market with CCP prone to intervene any day. However it does look lucrative at the moment with wide margins.

    I think I'll stay out of it but wish you luck. Just don't try to move them!

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    1. For sure.

      As alluded to in the article, I don't intend to get caught with stacks of PLEX on hand when the price drops again and I do expect it will drop!

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    2. As to moving them, I've said it many times before and I'll say it again.

      I love Blockade Runners! =)

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    3. Now that really is too much information :)

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  2. I feel that CCP would like the ISK per Plex to remain high.

    I greatly suspect that every seller of Plex has a normal subscription and hence the more ISK they get then the more likely they are to maintain their subscription.

    Assuming that the ultimate end buyer of the Plex is using it to extend game time then in effect game time is being extended for a higher price than a normal subscription - again, another benefit to CCP.

    What I don't know is if every Plex listed on the market was paid for with US$ or if it has been created by CCP to manage the market.

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    Replies
    1. Historically they've liked it to remain stable, gradually increasing over time. They are very averse to spikes. (and so they should be it forces customers to stop playing).

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    2. Agreed, CCP probably does want the price to remain high. But not too high and 650ish mil in sell orders is getting up there.

      BTW, check today's post about the crazy Amazon price.

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