Monday, 24 November 2014

800 Billion

I haven't posted a financial report in a couple months because I haven't really been doing much lately. It took nearly two months to make what I usually make in one but I finally broke 800 billion over the weekend... Blew it away in fact!

Normally I spend an hour or two a day (on average) working the market for 30-40 total hours a month. When I do that fairly consistently (without skipping too many days) I make around 50 billion per month after expenses (with expenses of 10-12 billion per month).

Lately however, expenses have been up a fair bit due to grinding standings for lower broker fees. I've been spending billions buying pirate tags for Data Center mission turn-ins for faction standings and paying TSCA to grind specific corporation standings for me. That costs 600 mil - 1 bil per character depending on tag prices for faction standing and 2.75 bil per character for 0-8 corp standing. Lower broker fees will pay off over the long term but for the short term it's a one time sunk cost reducing short term profits.

More recently PLEX prices have gone up significantly but the increased cost there has been more than offset by the fact that I'm using fewer PLEX (none at all right now) for dual training than I used to. I used to pretty much always have at least 2-4 accounts dual training and sometimes more.

Most importantly though, I've been far less active on the market, spending only 10 or 15 hours at it in Oct and another 10 or so in the first half of Nov. Last weekend though I was almost back to normal and it shows in my bottom line. Total net worth went up by more than 25 billion over the weekend.

Of course that doesn't mean I made 25 billion in profit in just a few days, a lot of that sudden increase was due to stock that had been purchased weeks ago but I didn't get around to transporting and posting for resale until last weekend.

I probably won't continue spending an hour or two a day working the market for much longer though. Unless and until that changes I won't be making 50 billion a month and I won't be posting regular monthly financial reports either.


  1. Fantastic stuff and thanks for documenting your journey.

    Look forward to your becoming a trillionaire soon!

  2. Fantastic stuff and thanks for documenting your journey.

    Look forward to your becoming a trillionaire soon also!

  3. hello, I'm struggling with making better profits at 15 Billion. I'm only making 300-400 mill a week is this a good rate or should I be able to do better than that? I currently have 7 characters doing trading but I'm a perfectionist and I feel i'm not being as efficient as I can be. should I be updating sell orders within a week or waiting a month or more if it hasn't sold at the current price. My profits seem to get destroyed soon after I post them buy a massive influx of product. I'm only targeting anything from a 10-20% margin and a 40-50% margin and making small profits that seem to be destroyed a few days later by a drop in the market.

    Any tips on efficiency would be welcome also how many sell orders do you have up on any one character at a time compared to buy orders?

    1. I can't actually remember how much I was making per week when I had 15 billion and a corrupted data file with jEveAssets a couple years back means I don't have any data from that far back either.

      Still, I'm sure I was making more than that. In fact IIRC I was somewhere around 10 - 15 billion when I couldn't at least double my ISK every month anymore.

      Being a perfectionist might be the problem. It's often better just to sell it at the first opportunity where you make a decent profit rather that worrying too much about getting "the best" price. It saves you time, the less time you spending looking for "best price", transporting stock and playing the 0.01 ISK game, the more time you have to spend on other investment opportunities.

      And the more often you go for smaller profit here and now the less often you'll get into price wars fighting with the spreadsheet guys all fighting over the same things in the same places because that's what their spreadsheets told them that was "best".

      The no-lifers and bots generally will notice you within a few days and try to stop you from selling anything. In that case you have two options

      1. squeeze the margins even tighter and wait it out. They'll get tired of low profits eventually. But that works best when you have plenty of ISK and can afford to have a lot sitting idle without hurting your profits.

      2. Otherwise, sell it quick for whatever you can get, even if it's at a small loss and reinvest into something that's still profitable. Don't take big losses though unless it's because you screwed up by falling for a margin scam and paying way too much or something like that.

      For efficiency, I find using rules of thumb for making most decisions really speeds things up.

      I'm not sure of the exact numbers but I do have a lot more buy orders than sell orders on most characters. At a guess I'd say less than 20% are sell orders. There are a couple exceptions where I might actually have more than 50% of active orders in sell orders but those are in out of the way places, far from the main hubs where buy orders don't work very well for most things.

    2. Upon further reflection it was when it hit 8 billion I couldn't at least double my money anymore. And I got lucky the month before buying a Titan book for 6 milion and making 4 billion profit on it or I wouldn't have doubled my money in a month at 4 billion either.

    3. I also hit plateaus at roughly 5 billion, 10 billion, 15 billion, 20 billion and 40 billion where I was stuck at that level and couldn't make much more than that for several months... Usually required increased order sizes as well as dropping some cheaper items and finding some more expensive ones to replace them.

  4. here is a snapshot of what i have going on right now.

    Do you think i have to little in escrows and escrows to cover or is it about right. right now i'm at the point where i try really hard to keep my wallet balance below 4 bill but it keeps popping back up. Which I kind of like. Maybe i'm just not reinvesting fast enough... or in the right areas.

    1. What level is your margin trading at?

      That makes a big difference in how much you need to hold back. With Margin Trading V (which all my traders have) I liked keeping Wallet Balance and Escrow around the same though it actually worked out best best for me when Wallet Balance a little higher.

      Your Wallet Balance is nearly double your Escrow. That's probably too much especially if you don't have Margin Trading V. The lower your Margin Trading the less you need to keep back to cover your orders.

      How much you need to hold back really depends on how aggressive your prices are too. The more aggressive you are the more (and more quickly) you'll be buying and selling which means you need to hold more back. The less aggressive your prices, the less you'll be buying and selling, so you can put up more and bigger orders and hold back less.

      I like using rules of thumb for things like that. It makes the decision process simpler, quicker and more efficient. I had several rules of thumb that came into play for that, most of them based around the numbers in jEveAssets tracker tab graph.

      1. I held back a certain absolute minimum amount on all characters. That amount kept rising as I got richer. Basically enough to cover a couple days worth of buying... Good days that is, not slow ones.

      2. On the busiest characters (Jita traders for example and especially the main Jita trader) I tried to hold back twice that amount. Again, basically enough to cover a couple good days worth of buying.

      3. I generally tried to keep "Escrow to cover" close to but still under my Total net worth. This might not seem important but I found it to be by far the best indicator that I had enough invested. If Escrow to cover was too far under Total then my profits weren't as good. If Escrow to cover was too high, I kept running out of ISK and all the problems that causes. Anytime Escrow to cover got up to or even just too close to it I started having problems. Around 10-20% less than Total seems to be the sweet spot for me. Even 5% either way is ok but starting to push it. But keep in mind that's with Margin Trading V on all characters, with Margin Trading IV keeping them equal would probably be fine and with lower levels you'd probably want Escrow to cover to be more than Total.

      4. Another one that turned out to be more important that it might seem was keeping Wallet Balance and Sell Orders close. Keeping Sell Orders under Wallet Balance would likely be ideal but that's an awful lot of work to do. For me just making sure Sell Orders don't get too much higher than Wallet Balance was good enough and a lot less work.

      Of course now, as I'm approaching 1 Trillion ISK in Total net worth, I do things differently. I have plenty of cash now and don't really need to follow most of those rules very consistently anymore but they were still very useful when "only" had 400-500 billion.

    2. I do have a few ideas for further growth in monthly profits (PLEX for example) but they're going to require at least a trillion ISK to play with and probably more.

      If you're going to play poker with the big boys you'd better have enough cash to last for more than a couple hands and I'm not there yet.

  5. When you talk about aggressive pricing, lets take Jita for Example, Are you talking about a specific percentage above all the other buy orders, not .01 isking it but like 5-8% above all other buy orders? Also how does this change with Amarr do you change the % above the buy orders there?

    I'm just asking because whenever I let my buy orders sit they usually sit for a month or two until they finally get filled when the market crashes.

  6. It's really not quite that simple. Pricing is a bit of an art, you just have experiment until you find what works best for different items in different places at different times vs different competitors.

    Generally speaking though if there's much competition you probably aren't going to sell much of anything at 10% profit and might have to go well under 5%.

    As a rule of thumb when facing stiff competition I'll cut by anywhere from 5-10% of the difference between buy and sell orders, or when there's some extreme price gouging going on, 20%, 50% or even more.

    I usually do try to keep my markups in the 5-10% range but that's not always possible. Often, especially on Jita, you have to go well under 5%, down to 2% or even less. When it gets much under 2% on most items I'll usually just let my orders sit unmodified (it's important to have both buy and sell orders up though so you know when the market starts to move on either end!) then let the no-lifers and bots fight over the market until margins improve.

  7. In fact sometimes the best thing to do is let the market for a particular item lie fallow for a while.

    Don't put any orders up, sit on any stock you have on hand for a while and see what happens. The no-lifers and bots will soon (often far more quickly than you expected) manipulate buy prices down, sell prices up to ridiculous margins again and then you jump back in again.

  8. I guess what I'm trying to say is you can't just boil it down to an exact science with specific thresholds where you buy at this price, sell at that price and basically just watch the ISK pour in.

    You have to be unpredictable and change up your pricing strategy at times. If not the competition will quickly figure out what you're doing, buy for 0.01 ISK more, sell for 0.01 ISK less and cut you off.