I’m trying to push my crafting level to 80. So.. Cheapest and fastest way I can see is to make Coifs from Leather.

So armed with my (not so) trusty Sacred Clay Needle(s) I set out to try and get to Level 80 Crafting.


I found the following Blurb on ‘Junk Trading’ in the RuneScape Forums.. Quick find code: 74-75-825-58191256 by Carrcomposer 04-Jan-2009 22:56:50


The Truth about Junk Trading There are a great deal of myths and misconceptions surrounding the practice of junk trading. Sadly, much of this misinformation is at least in part perpetuated by jagex via the regrettably dishonest GE article in the Knowledge Base.

Many players who are not aware of how junk trading works view it a sinister practice by deviant players who are engaging in something unspeakable bordering on item scamming. Still others view junk trading as a mass conspiracy of merchants with a singular goal to destroy the RS economy.

In the next few posts I will conclusively demonstrate what many players fail to realize: namely, that it is jagex’s policies that are solely to blame for junk trading. Then, I will provide three simple solutions which if implemented will abolish junk trading entirely without reopening the back door to RL trading.

What is junk trading? In short, junk trading is a method used to trade items that have been rendered untradeable by mispricing. It can best be understood by an example:

Player A has an item X which is in far higher demand than its GE price would indicate. Although the GE price is 50m, he finds that several people including Player B would be willing to pay 100m for it. Obviously the trade limits would prevent such a trade from ever taking place, so Player A needs to find a way to offset the trade in order to get a fair price for his item. He accomplishes this by “junk trading”, that is, pairing overvalued items with the undervalued item he wishes to sell in order to manufacture a value of 100m.

The final equation looks like this:

item X (GE value: 50m, street value: 100m) + junk (GE value: 50m, street value: ~0gp) = 100m cash

You can see from this breakdown that player A is effectively trading his item X for 100m cash.

What fuels junk trading? Junk trading is driven by pricing inequities caused by various GE restrictions. When an item is overvalued or undervalued and prevented from self-correcting, the law of supply and demand breaks down, causing supply to increase drastically while demand approches zero (or vice versa). The rigid trade restrictions imposed by jagex cause the market to grind to a halt, effectively rendering the item untradeable via conventional means.

In order to trade the item in light of this restriction, the player must pair it with items of the opposite “polarity” (if the item is undervalued, it is paired with overvalued items to create equilibrium, and vice versa)

What causes pricing inequities? There are two distinct sources of price discrepencies, and I will deal with them both seperately. They are 1) GE price floors/ceilings and 2) unresponsive/slow-updating prices

1) GE PRICE FLOORS/CEILINGS In addition to the 5% window which restricts prices to a perscribed range, there exist additional restrictions which serve to further limit price fluctuation. These take the forms of price floors and price ceilings. Floors and ceilings are completely distinct from the 5% window in that they are predetermined by jagex, bearing no relation to player supply/demand.

Jagex denies the existence of price floors/ceilings, claiming that “There is no ‘set value’ that prices are based on, with the exception that a price will never rise above a shop’s main stock price, or fall below the price a shop will pay for it.”* This statement is blatantly false, and demonstratively so. A quick visit to the GE database reveals that certain items have minimum prices which are equal to their average prices, for example the maple longbow (min 384, avg 384, max 403). The absence of the expected 5% window below the average price reveals that there is a floor at 384gp that prevents the price from ever falling below this value, completely regardless of player supply and demand!

Price floors create massive amounts of trade fodder, better known as junk, by locking prices at artificially high values and preventing them from fluctuating with player supply/demand. Among the items rendered untradeable by price floors are: regular to maple bows (strung and unstrung), virtually all bronze to mith armor and weapons, most summoning scrolls, most thrown ranged weapons, and far too many more to mention.

  • Source: Home > Game Guide > The Grand Exchange

2) UNRESPONIVE/SLOW-UPDATING PRICES Some items require a sales quota, that is, a certain number of the item must be sold or a certain number of days must pass before the price is allowed to update. Expensive items such as rares and third age often do not update even when the “recently traded items” section of the GE databased reveals them to have been sold, revealing that a trade quota has been put in place.

Still other items do not update simply because no transactions have been completed, as is the case for christmas crackers and other high end items. This reveals another fundamental flaw of the GE, namely that prices are not updated based on all offers but rather on completed offers only. That is, an item that is unjustly priced will only change if enough people are unwise enough to buy/sell the item at its current unjust price.

Solutions These solutions represent the most effective and indeed the ONLY way to end junk trading, namely, by addressing its root causes head on.

1. ALL PREDETERMINED PRICE FLOORS/CEILINGS MUST BE REMOVED! Price floors and ceilings prevent prices from fluctuating with player/supply and demand! Item prices will converge on their just values automatically; by artificially and baselessly fixing prices at predetermined levels, jagex virtually GUARANTEES that the GE prices will be incorrect. 2. Update prices based on all current offers, not just completed offers! Currently, the GE works on the counterintuitive principle that the more incorrect an item’s value is, the less likely it is to update! 3. Eliminate all price quotas and allow all items to update daily regardless of how many are traded. If anything, items that are traded in small quantities have the GREATEST need for frequent updates, since these items are especially prone from being locked at incorrect prices without the potential to self-correct!


Gaunts1 05-Jan-2009 07:05:36

Junk trading allows for profits to be generated from items that are supposed to be junk, and for the most part were routinely discarded as such. These items are byproducts of training production skills. The lack of tradability for these items brings an element of balance back to the game. Our gathering skills feed the production skills, the gathering skills are were the money is and the production ones consume it. The price of gaining experience in production skills is represented by the loss of value in raw materials as their experience is used to gain ranks. Only by junking are players able to obtain profits were by design there are none to be made. The practice allows production skills to turn profits when they are designed to create expense.

The KB does acknowledge the limitation imposed on prices and that completed trades are the only things that move them. This is no secret. Players now set prices within prescribed ranges by executing trades in the GE. The former free for all is in fact over. The floors remain in place to maintain a value for a single bow, pouch or what have you. The price paid by the general store, the shard return price, the flat-pack recoup price are to be the ONLY value reclaimed back from bulk produced items. Certainly an occasional single item sale on a produced item may yield a profit, but in general produced items are supposed to be worth then their raw materials. About the only exception to this is rune crafting.

No it was not always this way. In the beginning produced goods had values exceeding the raw materials as few players could make them and supplies were very tight. The profits on finished goods then were supported for years by the mass of botted/farmed cheap raw materials; you know the RWT influence that was the cause of all the game’s major changes.

The value in skills is your gaining of rank and not profits. The game values and ranks its players on experience only, wealth is not even on the chart as it too is a byproduct of playing the game. These skills help you meet the requirements to do quests and access other areas of the game.

The fix to the entire debacle is very simple. Put a rule in play whereby ANY purchased item(s) must be used or converted prior to it being eligible for re-sale. By use that would mean wielding it for a number of hours, else the conversion rule of processing the item into something else would take over.

With the above rule, those who feel a price is too high or low could in fact use their millions to get an item. The junk they accept would then need to be used or converted. It would be impractical to use wield each of 10k bows, so they would be sold to the store or dropped to the ground as the junk they are meant to be. The purchaser should have no issue in discarding the junk as they only paid the price for the single item that they believed it to be worth.

As to the GE some form of bidding to establish a price on a new item (idea not mine) before it is allowed for open trade would establish an items starting price. Completed trades and the averaging process would then take over and remain adequate enough at maintaining proper prices. Players would remain free to exchange goods outside the GE at essentially their desired price but would have to actually pay that price and not reclaim major parts of the expenditure back while disposing of the junk that should have previously been discarded as junk.


Odd Patriot 06-Jan-2009 18:36:36

To leave the merchants without blame is ludicrous, but at the same time the consumer is as much to blame for choosing to buy it at a price they feel ultimately is unreasonable.

The junk trading phenomenon is the final verdict on a command economic system that Jagex tried to introduce with the advent of the Grand Exchange. They tried to revoke the laws of supply and demand, and it massively failed for items that have do not have a clear supply/demand or for high end items that fluctuate rapidly based on which merchanting clan is manipulating what item (don’t tell me it doesn’t happen… it DOES!)

They could remove almost all of the restrictions (I’d keep the floors and ceilings to prevent mass manipulation, but loosen them by at least +/-10%) as long as the items on the Exchange are anonymous trades AND the outside trading remains balanced.

Another alternative solution is to have the items commonly used as junk be absorbed properly by Jagex. Those things have no use, and if one is given to them then they are less likely to be used as junk. Think the Advisor Ghrim flatpack update, only a lot better executed and good enough to absorb MILLIONS of these items from the game.


General K I 06-Jan-2009 18:56:09

I like what you wrote. It was well written and informative

The thing about your suggestions is it will encourage price manipulation. It exists at the moment but by letting the price of items float around so freely will result in certain people making a killing - thats why it’s the way it is; all rigid with floors and ceilings and stuff.

I don’t really think there is a perfect economic system for Runescape that closes the door on RWT, junk trading, price manipulation and other such undesirable practices.


Odd Patriot 07-Jan-2009 02:04:19

I think that the Grand Exchange was a positive step for this game. World 2 was in the total power of the merchants, and that wasn’t deniable. I saw throughout my long time on this game price spikes and drops that had no justification or logical explanation other than the merchants on world 2 colluded together yet again.

However, with a new economic system comes unintended consequences, which any emergent game play specialist will only try and take advantage of. Junk trading is that taking advantage of a flaw in the system. I do not think it is wrong; rather restricting the supply and demand with floors and ceilings is what is wrong.

The newest items are often the worst offenders of junk trading, as Jagex rarely gets high alchemy and shop values right. Instead, there should be automatic auctions of these items in the Exchange until a settled set price is ensured. As long as it is anonymous, there should not be an issue with RWIT.

Will junk trading and that other illegal trading method ever die? No. They can certainly be curbed, NOT banned. Banning would just allow emergent game players to seek the next method to ‘beat the system’.














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