Ishtars have always been a solid performer, generating on average about 31.2M profit per trade. The nerf coming in the Hyperion release doesn’t phase me. I’ve learned that you have to roll with the punches and not let adjustments like this impact your overall trading strategy. Items move in and out of popularity over time. I’ll just stop working with the Ishtar hull for a while and see how demand changes over time.
Lockefox got me thinking about my instincts for trading HACs a few days ago. I have always felt the Ishtar’s price to be historically less volatile than then Zealot so I went out to run the numbers and prove my theory.
P = time period
The numbers show that I was correct. If you want something stable to trade, go with the Vagabond. Higher risk items include the Ishtar and Zealot hulls.
Here is a snapshot of the historical buy prices for reference.
I leave for two weeks and you all accidentally the market. I was not able the participate in the Odyssey speculation, but I am enjoying catching up on it.
The wild swings that we are seeing in the Moon and Ice markets due to Odyssey adjustments made me reflect on the stability of the items that I trade.
I used my historical database to come up with a report to provide quantitative insight to help give values to the items that I instinctively know are high risk. Here is a snapshot of the lower and upper items listed in my Stability Report that covers three years of trading sorted by standard deviation (σ).
Here are some general observations about the items listed:
- Basic minerals, ammo, and modules are the most stable.
- Capital modules weigh in somewhere in the middle.
- Tech2 ships fill the upper band of the report.
- Tech3 hulls and associated Subsystems are randomly spread over the middle band.
- Certain battleships are high on the report because their popularity has changed over time due to shifting fleet doctrines.
- The Procurer BPO was an item that I speculated on heavily during the last patch, which netted very positive results.
- Capital ships are subject to large swings due to mineral price changes.
A tenant of becoming a good trader is minimizing your risk while trying to maximize your rewards. My advice for new traders is to work with more stable items as shown in the shaded green area of my report; they are subject to less swing and therefore will help minimize risk. As your ISK resources grow, you can move into riskier items that will [hopefully] yield larger returns.
Thanks for all the feedback in the comments. I actually spent some time recently to figure out how to calculate item volatility here https://k162space.com/2013/08/20/hac-price-volatility/. I’m working out how to pull numbers for all my data for a new post soon.
Another year of growth and transitions into larger projects.
Module, gun, ship construction and trading proceeded as it did the previous year. With reliable income from trading, we expanded our operation into heavy construction by adding a Carrier construction wing to our operation.
From these numbers we can see that our operation is facing more competition as margins were slightly lower than the previous year. To overcome this, we migrated our inventory to higher per-sale profit items. The drastic change in quantity can be explained by dropping Ammo as a common trade item.
This overview shows the benefits of spreading your trade load between high ticket, low volume items and more volume centered low price items.
Q1 and Q2 saw renewed vigor into trading as I started to invest more time into logistics and product research.
Q3, July especially, was a record breaking time as I took any liquidity and moved it back into assets. This also marked our shift into high ticket items. Additionally, at this point in the year my trading partner and I had a lot of time to devote to our operation.
September into October is a busy time for me personally. I took a long vacation October and was away from Eve for a few weeks. Everyone needs a break and our performance numbers directly show this.
Procurer speculation with the Inferno Patch.
Outsourcing some Highsec logistics with Red Frog Freight during busy periods.
Expanded trading into High Meta items.
Expanded construction and sales into Carrier hulls.
Invested 133 days of training into Racial Cruiser Construction V and Jury Rigging V to enable Tech 3 hull and subsystem production in the coming year.
Though there are profits in invention, I found the process of gathering materials, inventing a BPC, putting the component parts together to be uninspired; I had no real focus this year with invention. Most of the time I spent in this area was spent making Drones and increasing my stock of -1/-1 Anshar prints for a rainy day.
My two invention characters have 4-4-4 skills. I have found the training return of getting 5-4-4 or even 5-5-5 skills to marginally increase profits. Since the train time to get a Science skill to 5 is around 20 days, I have not felt the need to sink time into polishing off the skills.
I did keep a database record in order to produced the below summary of my invention statistics The overall success average came out to be 48.2%, which falls in line with any invention guide.
With the addition of Faction, Deadspace, and Officer modules to the market, I saw several trading opportunities throughout the year to work with these items. I had little to no interest in using the tedious contract system to trade these items so when they were added to the general market, I rejoiced.
Here is a summary of the performance of items by Meta levels. Faction and Deadspace items traded well and brought consistent high profits.
Escalation Barge Teiricide
With the changes to mining barges in the Escalation patch, my partner and I mainly targeted the Procurer hull as its build requirements changed the most with the patch. We speculated that the new barges would cost more post-patch so we build a large stock before patch day.
We ended up selling 288 units for a profit of 2.48 B. We put a smaller amount of effort into Retriever hulls and managed to build and sell 44 for a profit of 431 M.
Fear the Sabre
I had limited success with trading other racial Interdictors. The Sabre is the champion of them all and hopefully we see some further balancing to these hulls in upcoming patches.
Alpha Maelstrom to Rail Rokh
This year we saw the popularity of the Alpha Maelstrom as a viable Nullsec fleet composition fade away in favor of the Rail Rokh. I was slow to react to this change and by the time I got my Rohk BPO researched to an acceptable level, the switch to the new doctrine was already underway.
Rigs and Guns
The core rig types (Trimark, CCC, and Field Extender) continued to be a solid performer. If you sell a ship in an area, you should also sell related rigs to popular fits. Let this be a lesson in item cross-selling for anyone building, stocking, and selling ship hulls.
The core gun types seen below also provided some income over the year.
GoonSwarm Shrugged, I Smiled
During the GoonSwarm Ice Interdiction, I speculated on POS fuel and turned a profit. I made 648 M doing some passive trading in Jita on Oxygen Isotopes. In addition, people started to panic and predict that other Isotopes were going to be affected also. I made some early buys on Nitrogen and then sold them off at the height of their price level.
I have focused on and found a number of High Meta items that have proven to be very profitable. I’ve blanked out the names of them because I don’t yet want to disclose the item types at this point in time.
As expected implants were a high performer.
High volume modules provide a small source of income as working with these items means you are in a competitive and often saturated market.
The new Drone Damage Amplifier modules sold very well, but I had poor success with the Reactive Armor Hardener.
I have continued to have limited success with ammo. I have found the velocity of trading to be very slow which I think is due to the nature of ammo production and consumption.
Since ammo jobs are batch based (meaning that when someone runs a production job they are producing a large bath of ammo rather than a single unit), production has periods of high volume. Additionally when someone buys ammo, that person tends to buy a large stock and slowly work though the pile.
I keep stocking ammo with the intention that it will move, but I always am unimpressed by the numbers.
Tier 3 Battlecruisers
The popularity of the Tier 3 BCs remains high as I was able to make a profit on every racial type of them. Surprisingly the Oracle and Talos have been outselling the Tornado.
The Cerberus has remained a poor performer with no production or trading opportunities arsing this year. The Ishtar remains a strong seller as a preferred AFK mission ship while the Vagabond holds up the PVP end of the HAC spectrum. I fully agree with Kirith Kodachi’s recent comments on the upcoming rebalance initiative that will eventually hit HACs.
Tech 2 Logistics Falling From Grace
With the recent rebalance of Tech 1 logistics, I expect my production and trade of Tech 2 logistics ships to decline. As Jester pointed out, the proficiency of the Tech 1 variant can cheaply replicate the Tech 2 variant.
Champion CREST API changes and development with the community to enable 3rd party tools to flourish.
Pressure the CSM for industry and mining changes.
Though the Carrier project is new, it is proving to be profitable so we expect the expand the operation. We are going to look into Dreadnought production in addition to carriers.
Build from stockpile of Tech 3 hulls and subsystem BPCs.
Build backlog of invented Anashar BPCs.
In addition to trading, I’ve started up a small invention and Tech 2 production line. My initial approach is to start small and see how well items perform. For now I am going to be working with drones, bombers, and some popular modules. I’ve invented a few ships, but am holding off on producing them.
I’m saving the invention job history to my database and wrote a small display to show overall and individual item invention success rates. I’ll add this summary to my monthly updates as I’m sure inventors will find it interesting.
My first Jump Freighter invention job was successful despite the ~39.8% calculated success rate given my 4-4-4 skills.
Attempting the job cost 36.3 M of items that are destroyed regardless of the job output:
1x Collision Measurements – 7.6 M
64x Mechanical Engineering Datacore – 7.231 M
64x Gallente Starship Engineering Datacore – 21.438 M
Obelisk BPC – Copied from my BPO
Since I am not actively producing Freighters due to their low markup and currently dropping mineral prices, I put the Obelisk BPO back into an open copy slot. It takes around 43 days for one copy in an empire slot so you can see why Jump Freighters are slow to produce.
Further details of Jump Freighter production can be found here.