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Price Manipulation Consequences


Akiha
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Should their be consequences for those who intentionally manipulate price markets and pump and dump their items?
I noticed recently with Eternaweens, Batsabers, and Catastrophic Companions, all of these were practically pumped and dumped for traders who have high backpacks buying frequently with bots.

 

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The only real "consequence" that can be given is to know who's taken advantage of it, and choose not to trade or interact with them if you don't want to. Don't get me wrong, this pump-and-dump thing is shitty, but it's an innate flaw with the system at hand, they're not breaking anything by doing it. But outside of mass refusal to pay these prices or sell for them, unfortunately nothing that would be fair can be done about it. (And I'll be frank, I don't think it's worth going full gullotine over Steam items).

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13 minutes ago, Norah said:

The only real "consequence" that can be given is to know who's taken advantage of it, and choose not to trade or interact with them if you don't want to. Don't get me wrong, this pump-and-dump thing is shitty, but it's an innate flaw with the system at hand, they're not breaking anything by doing it. But outside of mass refusal to pay these prices or sell for them, unfortunately nothing that would be fair can be done about it. (And I'll be frank, I don't think it's worth going full gullotine over Steam items).

I agree, this is just natural for someone to manipulate a market and raise the price for profit. It's just being aware of when this is happening and avoiding those markets until everything stabilizes on the old price or a new one.

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How would you even punish people for this sort of situation? You have to have proof of their intent which isn't easy to prove definitively. How do you deal with everyone outside of the main person/group? The people who bought in to try to capitalize on the price increases are partially to blame as well.

 

Point being, this would be a difficult issue to moderate.

 

A pump and dump like we saw with the bat sabers may be a grey area ethically but it's not breaking any rules. Just pay attention to the how's and why's of the market to prevent yourself from getting caught up in it and don't interact with the people doing these things if you don't feel it's right.

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Where's you proof there is a pump and dump going on? These items are highly desired flex items with limited supplies from cases that are increasingly reducing in number through the years of Halloween mass unboxings. It is only natural for prices to increase with old owners quitting tf2 and not selling, current player base increasing wealth and wanting to buy, and new players who want to buy.

 

Edit: not sure about player-to-player trade, but there had not been a sale nor more than one to a couple of listings of Strange Catastrophic Companions for many months on both mp.tf and scm. Simple supply and demand economics.

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Pump and dump implies there is desinformation being used to create and artificial demand for a certain item and then pulling out in the heat of the hype. Why do you believe this is the case with those items?

 

 

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53 minutes ago, LSO said:

Where's you proof there is a pump and dump going on? These items are highly desired flex items with limited supplies from cases that are increasingly reducing in number through the years of Halloween mass unboxings. 

If they're so "highly desired" why is this MASSIVE price increase happening now? Case supply is lower, that is true, but there has pretty much never been a price jump so unreasonably high in such a short time for several items in several markets. In 9 months, both the unique and strange versions of the catastrophic companions have seen more than a 300% value increase based on price suggestions alone. We're not even talking about current seller prices either, just off statitical data from jan 21 - sep 21. Idk about you but that smells like some manipulation to me 

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13 minutes ago, Omnom/Omni said:

If they're so "highly desired" why is this MASSIVE price increase happening now? Case supply is lower, that is true, but there has pretty much never been a price jump so unreasonably high in such a short time for several items in several markets. In 9 months, both the unique and strange versions of the catastrophic companions have seen more than a 300% value increase based on price suggestions alone. We're not even talking about current seller prices either, just off statitical data from jan 21 - sep 21. Idk about you but that smells like some manipulation to me 

Asset classes all around the world have had massive inflation during the past 1.5-2 years, and generally most of the price increase for (liquid) assets occurs on a small number of days per year. Less liquid assets such as property or rare tf2 items don't gradually increase due to illiquidity. And yes, digital items such as tf2 items *are* digital assets and are subject to the same speculation and frothiness of all asset markets in the world right now.

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I just don't understand what law or what rule is being broken. This is not like bottled water after a hurricane. No one is going to suffer if they can't afford a batsaber. Just let it play out.

 

Even if you can corner the market on a rarer item, you have to unwind from your position over a long timeframe or the market just craters.

 

I do feel dumb for not grabbing a strange one when I could have easily afforded one.

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Price manipulation, lol. Have you seen the 800k keys added to the market in just a year. That's like 40% of the existing supply. People are buying all kinds of dumb shit to not get caught in this inflation.

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2 hours ago, ChungusJabronie said:

then pulling out in the heat of the hype

Holdd, HOOOOLDDDD! DON'T SELL!!!

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I mean if you think about it it's technically just reselling on a massive scale that may or may not affect the supply and demand of an item, I can see alot of wrong in that but tough shit and with that out of the way when we put items like spells into perspective, like back in 2014 (I think I'm not historically accurate) spells used to cost a few refs above the normal price of an item (excluding rare items like flip flops n all that bs), but a bunch of big boys like squirrelly where like fuck it why not hoard them, which they did and in terms pumped the prices and eventually they dumped them slowly to maintain as much profit as they can without crashing the prices, and as NickMan said you can't really moderate an issue like this effectively because you can't pinpoint people's intentions so I guess imo the only effective solution is staying away until the prices calm down to not get caught up in the action

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13 hours ago, LSO said:

Where's you proof there is a pump and dump going on? These items are highly desired flex items with limited supplies from cases that are increasingly reducing in number through the years of Halloween mass unboxings. It is only natural for prices to increase with old owners quitting tf2 and not selling, current player base increasing wealth and wanting to buy, and new players who want to buy.

 

Edit: not sure about player-to-player trade, but there had not been a sale nor more than one to a couple of listings of Strange Catastrophic Companions for many months on both mp.tf and scm. Simple supply and demand economics.


I should reiterate my point more.

I think that intentional market manipulation especially with bots should be a bannable offense, you can make a point upon the recent batsaber situation being like this, or they should be at least marked on backpack.tf

But who am I to say anything with my small backpack, we all know who the janitors favor more.

unknown.png

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55 minutes ago, Akiha said:


I should reiterate my point more.

I think that intentional market manipulation especially with bots should be a bannable offense, you can make a point upon the recent batsaber situation being like this, or they should be at least marked on backpack.tf

But who am I to say anything with my small backpack, we all know who the janitors favor more.

unknown.png

That is an obvious attempt at a pump and a reason why I didn't say "all" the items OP mentioned. There is a difference between these cheap and easily purchased items (the Enchantments) and the two rare items that you mentioned (Cats/Bats), at least for strange qualities of both and normal for cats. You may have a point about normal batsabers though.

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I agree that there 'should' be a consequence for market schemes like pump n' dump, but the problem is there's not some regulatory body for TF2. The closest we have are big trading sites which are havens for the people doing such things. It would be like if the SEC was made up of former CEOs and bankers. Oh. Wait....

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As far as i know, spending a lot of money on tf2 and buying items on a large scale doesnt break any rules. Even when it result in manipulating the market. if you have enough money and decide to buy all of the eternaween on the market, go ahead, its allowed. 

 

Some practice of price manipulations are banned by the private trading plateform backpack .tf, like creating buy orders with the intention of inflating prices and not honoring them. But the only thing backpack can do against culprits is to ban them from their websites. The guy can still trade elsewhere. 

 

I disagree with the message here, i dont think there should be a consequence for buying items and reselling them for higher price. TF2 economy is based on rarity, and since the begining people have been hoarding hats and items, creating rarity, and reselling for profit. 

 

 

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