I decided to take another look to my last 2 years as a trader. This post is going to be an “add-on” to my previous post http://curses-im-in-my-pod.blogspot.pt/2015/07/trading-2013-2015-financial-report.html so please read it 1st. Everything I previously said pretty much still applies but I also want to dwell into my expenses (PLEX consumption and hauling process) and into my Blueprint endeavor.
Here is the Balance updated version in a table and a quick explanation:
Buy (Isk) field – It’s pretty much everything I buy from the market. Important note! This includes PLEX that I use to pay subscription and stockpile a bit, plus my expenses with PVP ships.
Sell (Isk) field – It’s everything I sell in the market. It pretty much represents the items I trade. I don’t really sell anything other than I buy in Jita, exception to the occasional faction mod that I grab from some poor fella who came into my scram range, or some mods that I might buy at discount from corp, but those number are hardly relevant.
Market Profit (Bil Isk) – This is the profit value provided by the program “EVE Profit”, using the “First in/First out” method.
Hauling Expenses (Bil Isk) – Isk spent with courier contracts. This includes the cost of hauling stuff from Jita do other empire Hubs and also the cost of hauling PVP stuff from Jita to Curse.
Plex Expenses (Bil Isk) – The value of PLEX consumed to pay for my accounts or other services (like switching toons between accounts).
Blueprint Profit (Bil Isk) – Isk made considering the “Contract Sell Value” minus the “Blueprint Cost”
Blueprint Expenses (Bil Isk) – Expenses related to the Blueprint research activity, such as courrier contracts, corp office rental or others.
Misc Investment (Bil Isk) – These represent several miscellaneous investments outside the Market sphere, such as the “Ex-Corp mate Stash” posted at http://curses-im-in-my-pod.blogspot.pt/2015/08/trading-blueprints-corp-mate-stash.html and re-selling contracts.
Balance (Bil Isk) – This should pretty much be my liquid wealth increase in the end of the month
Expenses/Profit (%) – This is the % that all the expenses represent over all the Profits.
Still, in order to truly analyze the data and talk better with you fellas, I prefer to show you the data in form of a graph, so here is the “Overall Graph”:
In my previous post at http://curses-im-in-my-pod.blogspot.pt/2015/07/trading-2013-2015-financial-report.html I pretty much presented and extensive view onto my market profits, considering the value calculated by the program “EVE Profit”, using the “First In, First Out” method, and how they evolved considering my real life issues. I have really nothing extra to say about it so we’ll proceed to the next chapter.
Back in January 2010 I made the promise to myself to not spend any real life money on EVE, so I used Plex ever since. This value represents the PLEX I consume. Extra Plex that I buy and stockpile in my hangar is NOT considered here.
Looking at the graph, in 2013 and 2014, you can see I used to spend about 2 Billion in PLEX, while paying for 3 accounts. 2 accounts were training my PVP toons and 1 account was training my Jita Market toon. In fact, I was so clueless on what to train in my Jita Market toon because he had indeed already obtained the relevant trade skills long long ago, that I was actually training him for some neutral support in PVP. He has 0 Skillpoints in gunnery, but has decent drones and missiles skills, being able to use Blockade Runners, Mining Barges, Missile Assault Frigates, Logistics, Hictors, Dictors, Recons, Cover Ops, Interceptors, Drone/Missile Battleships, Tengu, Drone/Missile Heavy Assault Cruisers, Drone/Missile Battlecruisers, Golem, Thanatos, and last but not least, a Phoenix with T2 Siege module! HELL YEAH!!... but I really never used it in any of it, except maybe in a guardian doing some ninja salvaging couple years ago.
This meant that training the Jita Toon was useless, and with PLEX prices increasing and my own revenues decreasing right after reaching my all low “Baby Arriving” spike, I decided to drop 1 account, reducing my expenses. In October 2014 I have a low spike in my PLEX expenses because I had to use 4 PLEX to move relevant market toons between accounts.
The following month I had indeed a reduction in my PLEX expenses, but due to the permanent price increase, I’m spending as much isk now with 2 PLEX as I was back in March 2014 with 3 PLEX… Auch…
I recently started the whole Blueprints Research endeavor in May 2015, and comparing to my my “Market Profits” the income is truly…. Low. Not only that, you can see I had a huge “Blueprint Expenses” (about 2 Billions) in July 2015. This is mostly because I needed to train my Market toons with proper research skills, consuming 2 PLEX to activate multiple character training in same account. Since August 2015 I have 4 Toons with the necessary skills to research low tier BPOs.
These 2 PLEX were not included into the “PLEX expenses” category for a simple reason. I want all the expenses directly associated with the Blueprint endeavor to be properly separated, in order to have an idea how long it’ll take to retrieve my initial investment.
In continuation to my post http://curses-im-in-my-pod.blogspot.pt/2015/09/trading-blueprints-where-to-research.html, using a corp office and putting all the blueprint in corp hangar is really awesome! Every Blueprint is avalable to any of my toons, and every toon of mine can deliver jobs, no matter who started the job. Everything is really available to all toons and makes it all pretty easy.
During May, June and July my Blueprint endeavor consisted in researching low tier BPOs to the max, and sell them in public contracts in Jita.
In the end of September my initial investment of 2 billions was pretty much covered, but I decided to upgrade the operation a bit more… I installed a small POS with an Hyasyoda Lab in order to research my BPOs faster. I want to start researching higher tier BPOs and I trully only need to undock and go to the POS once per month, so not big hassle. I purchased already like 6 month of fuel.
I used this opportunity to buy “Beancounter MY-703” and” Beancounter RR-603” to 2 of my toons, to increase the reseach speed. They cost around 25 mil and in theory increase the research for 3%, but in reality, due to how EVE stacks bonus it’s really only 1% in the end… Not really worth, so I ain’t buying more to the rest of my toons.
This means that I ended up investing a total of around 700mil, even though I can get some isk back if I sell the Tower later on. I’m also considering the POS Fuel in stock as an expense.
The total balance for the Blueprint endeavor is -708 Millions, meaning that 6 month after starting with the whole process I ain’t achieving a positive balance just yet, mostly due to investing in a POS. Still is really not a big problem, and a positive balance should be achieved by the end of October.
In August I decided to expand my business a bit more and decided to start making BPCs too. I dislike how little low-tier BPC are worth, so had to do some research and decided I’d try to sell, Sov Infrastructure Upgrade BPCs after researching the BPOs slightly. Currently I have 1 Billion invested in Sov Infrastructure Upgrade BPCs BPOs researched up to ME/TE 5/12, with the main intention of creating BPCs. This is really not an “expense” and more an “investment” because I can try to sell these BPOs later on at a profit.
You can also see the results in the following table.
In September I sold 189 mil worth in BPCs, 956 mil worth in BPOS, for a total of 1.1 Bil from around 50 completed contracts. BPOs represented 83% of the Blueprint profits. I have around 85 outstanding public contracts in Jita waiting for you to buy them all.
My objective if for the whole Blueprint endeavor to pay for a PLEX per month… Not quite there just yet, but very close, if it maintains the same results.
The work involved in researching BPOs is also minimal, with only a few easy clicks, though the biggest hassle is indeed dealing with expired contracts and putting new contracts up. Comparing Blueprint Profits to Market Profits might look as they’re minimal, but is still good easy isk, and 1 billion in a month is nothing to scoff at!
I stated previously that I use Red Frog Freight to do my hauling, but it wasn’t always like that. I used to autopilot freight runs from Jita to my hubs, and when I only traded 1 billion at a time, it was really not a big problem. Eventually, my business grew and I was putting 4 billions into my AFK autopilot hauling freight. You can already imagine what happened…
So after I got suicide ganked for a total of 5 billion loss (including my Obelisk), I turned over to Red Frog and pretty much never undocked again.
I went to check my hauling expenses and put them into the “Overall Graph”. I’ll link it here again so you don’t have to scroll up.
Hauling expenses have been pretty much minimal from October 2013 to October 2014, followed by a small increase up to February 2015 and huge increase since that date. This is mostly due to Red Frog Freight increasing their rates by A LOT! Going from Jita do Dodixie cost 8.5 mil in October 2013 and went up to 26 mil in September 2015. Suicide gank groups have proliferated in empire, even if we exclude events like “Jita Burn”, so users are paying the bill.
Not only that, in order to easy the logistics load onto my corp mates and because I do have isk available, since march 2015 I started paying Black Frog Freight to haul my stuff from Jita to K-QWHE in Curse. Each run costs around 370 million. Even though is not a market related expense, it’s an expense that does makes me a hole in the wallet, so I need to include it.
Here is my hauling expenses table:
I feel it’s also interesting to take a look into my Hauling trips per hub stats. It’s pretty accurate to say that hauling trips can represent fairly nicely the volume of business in each hub, considering that each trip takes around 1 Billion worth of stuff. Here is the graph:
In October 2014 I took 5 billions to Tash-Murkon hub, but it did not provided good results. I can even understand why. Tash-Murking is a small hub, too close to Amarr and it sells, mostly cheap mods that I run away from. It’s not the place to sell structures, implants, capital mods or faction mods. It’s a place to sell ships modules and even then at a small rate. I quickly abandoned that experiment.
In the beginning of 2014 I actually traded in Amarr, but I was never too fond of the results. Profit margins crashed too fast for my taste due to lot’s of competition. I believe Amarr to be better place for station trading rather than regional trading since it has an already considerable movement. Volume taken to Amarr decreased during 2014 and I eventually abandoned it completely in 2015.
In late 2013 I traded in Rens, but also never liked the results much. Generally there were good profit margins, but competition was weirdly large. I left Rens for dead up until January 2015, when I tried to bring it back to life, but honestly at this point I was having too many market orders to manage daily, considering I was also trading in Dodixie and Hek, so Rens entered hibernation again.
Dodixie is my good old mate, being my favorite hub up to March 2015. Decent margins, decent sales and not too much competition in my sales categories, as long as I updated my orders once per day, or profits would drop to 0. Things changed after march 2015, partially due to my fault. Not only I stopped updating my orders daily, but I tried to sell more and more faction mods in Dodixe, leaving implants, capital mods and structures behind. Both were bad calls. Faction items in Dodixie have way way more competition than other categories and profit margins are shattered faster. Also I could achieve good profits in Hek while only updating market orders once per 3 days or so, representing less work, and therefore contributing to put Dodixie a bit in the side.
Hek was indeed a great surprise and success. I went to Hek after leaving Rens in December 2013 and was love at first sight. It pretty much went from 0 to Dodixie levels in a couple month. Also I expanded my sale items list in Hek, specially faction mods that did not work all that well in Dodixie. After march 2015 I decided to give Hek a big boost in volume, mostly because like stated previously, I could have good profits with less work and less market orders updates. Even though this strategy worked nicely and my profits have been consistently better, with less work, it does represents a vulnerability in my strategy. If “something happens” to Hek, I’ll be in major trouble, because I’m indeed putting all my eggs in the same basket… I’ll try invest a bit more in Dodixie to spread more my investments.
HAULING SUICIDE GANKS
I could not skip to talk about suicide ganks. I requested around 800 trips in empire, from Jita to other hubs and got suicide ganked 8 times, so about 1% of my trips. I supose it’s not too bad. Still suicide ganks are annoying because even though you get your collateral back, you’re still losing Isk bigtime. If stuff is not in the market, then is not making me a profit, not to mention that the time I spent buying all the stuff is completely lost.
My last suicide gank was in September 2015, and the Red Frog pilot greed also probably had a role to play in it. The pilot took 2 of my contracts to the same hub, at the same time, in the same freight, moving effectively with 2 billions worth of stuff, thus making himself a juicier target. After this event I started looking for alternatives and joined “Haulers Channel” ingame.
These fellas pick up public contracts linked in chat, so I decided to give it a shot, while choosing my own reward and collateral. I made a small test and decided to maintain the reward I’d give Red Frog, but I increased the volume of stuff hauled to 1.6 Billions and set the collateral at 2.0 Billions.
Guess what… IT WAS ALSO SUICIDED GANKED… seriously?! The first ever public courier contract I gets blown into pieces. Still after the initial impact I thought about it a bit better and it didn’t turned out all that bad. I just happened to make 400 million profit in 1 day. Maybe even more than I’d make in the market, considering I have around 18% average profit in my market stuff. Can’t really decide if this public courier contract was a failure (cargo did not arrive destination) or a huge success because I made a decent profit. Surely enough, this “profit” will not show up in the “logs”. In order for this “profit” to no disappear into thin air, I manually inserted the 400mil profit into my “Misc. Investment” category… I’ll get on that later on.
And yes, I’ll definitely be making more public couriers with 1.5 billions in cargo and 2 billions collateral. I just need to make sure I don’t mix up the “reward” field with the “collateral” field while putting the public contract up…
I been trying to expand my investments, mostly via the contract system, because I already have a list of 600+ items to integrate the Market Regional Trade. These investments consist right now mostly in:
- Ex-Corp Mate Blueprint Stash initially posted at
- Capital BPOs re-sales
- Other weird stuff
Concerning my Ex-Corp Mate Blueprint Stash, after the initial 675 million investment in July, and considering the base cost of a BPO 11,7 mil (the final value was reached dividing the 675 millions per 58 BPOs) and the BPCs for free, I achieved an income of 979 mil, translating on a profit of 523 mil, from 60 public contracts.
While trying to escalade my Blueprints endeavor, I noticed that some smart fellas are able to buy researched Capital BPOs at a good price, and them resell them at a profit. Of course I added those guys to my contacts in order to analyze better their methods, by looking at their contract history and having a glimpse on how to make good isk the same way. Right now I invested in some researched Capital BPOs and am trying to sell them. Let’s see how goes. I made 181 mil profit reselling researched Capital BPOs
As for weird stuff, I designed my spreadsheet to include stuff like a suicide gank profit or loss. Since I know I made a 400 mil “profit” from my last suicide gank, I decided to include it in the “Misc. Investment” category.
There are some factors that are not represented in my spreadsheets. For example, from time to time I bring faction mods that I looted from my kills, from Curse to Empire. These are acquired for “free” or at a low price from Corp Hangar and then sold in a Market Hub. These profits are not properly accounted for, but tend to be pretty minimal.
Finally, taking in account all the income and all the expenses we obtain the “Balance” and it pretty much represents the isk that I earn each month. Here is the “Overall Balance” graph again so you don’t have to scroll up.
Not much more needs being said about it, except that I want my balance to be HUUUUUUGGGEEEE. Easier said than done ofc, specially because I want to continue spending no more than 20-30 minutes per day (in average) doing market stuff or earning isk.
In order to try increase my profits, I’m trying out the whole low tier Blueprint Research and Sov Infrastructure Upgrade BPCs project, as well as trying to resell researched Capital BPOs.
In order to diminish my expenses, that tend to eat around 30% of my profits, specially after Red Frog increased their prices around may 2015, I’m trying to put up some public courier contracts in Haulers Channel, at more advantageous terms than provided by Red Frog.
Lastly, according to EVEAssets my wealth goes around 130 bil. The reason I’m putting this “statistic” for last is because I don’t really care much about this number. The only reason I want a HUUUUGGEEEEEE balance is to be able to buy many ships to blow up in space. It’s much more important for me to achieve an easy, fast and efficient process to make a lot of isk monthly, rather than having many assets. My asset’s job is to provide my daily fix of adrenaline and meet it’s creator at the Source in a blazing explosion!