Chapter 505 - Three Men Make a Tiger
Nie Yan left Guo Huai with a set of instructions before setting out. Since they decided to play this game, why not go all out? The scope wouldn't be limited to just Calore, but every city in both the Viridian and Satreen Empires. If everything went off without a hitch, Asskickers United would hit the jackpot. Nie Yan and Guo Huai prepared a total of 3,000,000 gold. It wasn't much compared to the entire gem and Magic Runestone market. However, if their plan succeeded, they could swallow up at least 10% of the market in one go.
Nie Yan also got in touch with Sleepy Fox, Fa Lan, Ah Chen, and the others, so they could get a piece of the pie.
Leaving the rest to Guo Huai, Nie Yan went off to level with his Javelin Launcher and 3,000 javelins.
Around this time, players "selling" gems and runestones for a bargain started popping up on the streets of every city. Gems worth 1,000 gold were being advertised for only 500 gold. Meanwhile, gems and runestones worth several hundred gold were being advertised for only 20-30 gold. Rumours began circulating around. One claimed the prices of gems and runestones were seeing a huge dip, with people on the forums "confirming" this by recounting what they were seeing on the streets. Another claimed a secret shop had been found which sold gems and runestones for dirt cheap, and that people were selling these for a profit margin of hundreds of gold, striking it rich overnight.
No one could tell if there was any truth to these rumours. After all, secret shops selling rare items was a fairly common occurrence. Similar situations had happened before. For example, Web Scrolls used to be quite expensive in the marketplace. However, after word got out that a secret shop sold them for ludicrously cheap, their price plummeted and hadn't gone back up to this day. Perhaps the rumour about a secret gem shop really were true.
Most high level players only stored gems in their personal storages. After seeing the prices plummet, these players felt their hearts ache. Things like equipment were usually sold right away since they tended to lose value very quickly over time. On the other hand, gems were always in high demand while their drop rates were quite low. So, their prices rarely fluctuated. Many players hoarded gems, only selling some off occasionally.
Gems had always been a type of hard currency. Most players wouldn't be willing to trade their good equipment for gold. But if you offered them gems, they might consider it. Bartering gems for equipment was a fairly common transaction in the marketplace.
Some high level players only accepted gems when selling equipment. For them, gems accounted for a large portion of their personal assets. When the value of gems suddenly plummeted, they felt like a slab of meat was being carved out of their hearts!
Whether or not these rumours had any substance, nobody could confirm. Some players didn't want to be too hasty. Others immediately started dumping their gems on the auction house at the first sign of trouble. However, no one was willing to buy gems right now since they might come out at a loss. If the rumours about the secret shop really were true, prices would continue to fall for the next several days. At that time, they wouldn't need to spend so much gold to socket their equipment. Buying right now definitely wasn't worth it.
Those with gems wanted to quickly dump their stock. Meanwhile, those looking to buy continued playing the wait-and-see game. The market cooled off. Suddenly no one was touching the gems in the auction houses. Those who were anxious to get rid of their stock quickly had no choice but to keep lowering their prices. However, this only led to more people waiting to see how low the prices would fall.
The gem market fell into turmoil. More and more gems were flooding in, but no one was buying. Many players were frozen by indecision.
The people Guo Huai dispatched proved very effective. The rumours spread like wildfire. In the span of a few hours, almost every player was talking about the falling prices of gems, urging their friends and acquaintances to quickly sell before it was too late. Gems that only a day ago were being sold for 1,000 gold would now go for only 500 gold. After more time passed, even 300 gold would be too much. Many players were still willing to buy some of the cheaper gems if they needed them urgently. But for the gems worth several hundred up to a thousand gold, they would patiently wait for the prices to fall lower. After all, this wasn't some small purchase.
A group of 10 players had gathered together outside the entrance of an auction house in Calore. They looked like they were about to set out to do some levelling. Before long, their conversation shifted to gems.
"I heard the price of gems is falling. A Fire Resistance Gem (5) went from 1,000 gold to only 500 gold. I'll see if I can snag one when the price drops to 300, then I can socket it into my armour," a Fighter said.
"A few days ago, I spent 300 gold to buy a Radiant Gem (3), and I'm really kicking myself for it. Do you know what it's selling for right now? Only 80 gold! You'd have to be stupid to buy right now. I heard some players found a secret shop where you can buy 1,000 gold gems for only 30 gold, and they're selling it to us for a crazy profit. I bet in a few more days you'll see 1,000 gold gems for only 100 gold! If you spend 300 gold to buy a gem right now, you'll definitely regret it later!" a Holy Mage interrupted.
"Really?" the Fighter asked with a skeptical face.
"Of course it's true! One of my friends visited that secret shop before. He ended up turning a profit of 300,000 gold reselling the gems! Give it some time and you'll be hard pressed to find someone willing to buy a Fire Resistance Gem (5) for even 100 gold! Fortunately, I learned about this early. I completely emptied out all the gems in my personal storage. Hehe… in a few days, I'll have myself some robes with high Physical Resistance," an Arcane Mage chimed in.
"Damn, really? 300,000 gold, that much?" The nearby players sucked in a breath of cold air and came up to inquire.
Seeing a crowd starting to gather around him, the Arcane Mage started blowing even more smoke.
This was the so-called, "three men make a tiger." A rumour repeated enough would eventually become fact.
Those who didn't have gems and wanted the price of gems to continue falling did their best to spread the rumour. Those who didn't initially believe the rumours and still had gems in their personal storages let out deep sighs and began dumping their gems. Those who wanted to buy gems played the wait-and-see game. Those who had gems slashed their prices like mad in a bid to get rid of them quickly. As a result, the prices of gems in the market gradually fell lower and lower. This allowed players to truly experience the so called snowball effect.
These results were even greater than what Nie Yan and Guo Huai expected. Nie Yan originally predicted the price of gems would fall to their target value in five days. However, the rumours spread faster than they expected. On the second day, the prices were already far lower than they anticipated.
Gems that were normally worth 1,000 gold were being completely ignored in the auction houses despite their prices being cut to only 100 gold. This was simply unbelievable!
「Nie Yan, should we start reeling in the net?」Guo Huai asked. This plummet in the price of gems had left him trembling in trepidation. He wondered if the prices would ever recover.
Nie Yan checked the Super Trade Channel. The auction houses were filled with gems, more than five to six times the usual amount. Everyone was withdrawing the gems from their personal storages and dumping them in the auction houses. The spike in the amount of gems further reaffirmed the belief in people's hearts that the rumours were true. Otherwise, why would so many people be selling their gems all of a sudden?
Once the rumour got some backing, it became even more frightening.
Nie Yan estimated this was the limit for how low the prices would fall. Any lower and players would rather start keeping the gems to use for themselves. After all, the people selling these gems weren't poor.
「Start buying everything up!」Once Nie Yan gave the order, Guo Huai had the people under him in the over 300 auction houses spread out across the Viridian and Satreen Empires start buying up the gems.
3,000,000 gold was gone in a flash. About 12% of the gems in the market had been eaten up.
"3,000,000 gold, all gone," Guo Huai gulped, cold sweat dripping from his forehead. This was his first time spending such a ludicrous amount of money.
「What about Sleepy Fox, Ah Chen, and the others?」Nie Yan asked.
「They're also buying up everything like crazy. Holy Empire has spent 500,000 gold on gems; the War God Tribe, 600,000; Sapphire Shrine, 500,000; Battle Crazed alliance, 400,000; and Radiant Sacred Flame, 300,000. Adding everything up, that's 5,000,000 gold gone in an instant.」
Nie Yan did some calculations. 5,000,000 gold was roughly 20% of the market.
「Reach out to the Dragonsoar Financial Group. Let them get in on some of the action too. We'll also liqiduate a portion of the guild treasury! Any gold that we can get we'll use to buy gems. Don't the Viridian and Satreen Empires have a few large loan organizations? Let's see how much we can borrow. Make sure to carry everything out in secret. This is a rare opportunity. If we miss it, it won't come again.」
「Don't they have a 10-day 10% interest rate? That's a bit dangerous. What if the price of gems doesn't recover, and we can't sell everything off? That gold will all go down the drain,」Guo Huai anxiously said. He didn't want to end up ruining the guild.
「Don't worry. We'll make back more than 10 times our initial investment!」Nie Yan reassured. They were profiting far more than the loan sharks by selling these gems.
「Alright, don't blame me if something goes wrong. I'll use the earnings of our several strongholds as collateral to get a loan from those lenders.」Guo Huai gritted his teeth. Only Nie Yan was this courageous, daring to borrow gold from high interest lenders. Profit and risk walked hand in hand.