PROTRADER: Playing Chicken

By: Travis Allen

Before today’s lesson, I have some announcements for the class. The first is that James Chillcott (@mtgcritic) and I have started a podcast, MTG Fast Finance. It’s a no-frills, on-topic discussion of the week’s Magic finance news. We start with a review of the biggest price changes, why they occurred, and what to expect. Then we each share several cards we’re watching as potentially profitable. Our third segment is a look at any recent meaningful tournament results (this week’s episode will assuredly look at SCG Atlanta). We finish off the episode with some quick back-and-forth on whatever topic strikes us. Our goal is to keep the content at the forefront, without a lot of fluff. Neither of us enjoy listening to 3 hours of banter with 3 minutes of useful information inside, so we’re thinking maybe some of you guys don’t either. Our goal is to make this into a weekly show that appears on, among other places, MTGCast and iTunes. Please give it a listen, and watch @mtgfastfinance for upcoming episodes!

If that isn’t enough for you, I’m also still doing Cartel Aristocrats with Jeremy Aaronson, Douglas Johnson, Jim Casale, and Sigmund Ausfresser. It’s an unedited video stream where we take questions and discuss the latest Magic events. You can find all the episodes on YouTube here, and submit questions/watch for news at @cartelartistocrats. Our next live stream is tentatively scheduled for this coming Saturday, 1/30/16 at 2:30 EST. Come hang out and ask a question!

Speaking of Cartel Aristocrats and segues, our last episode included a question about whether someone should sell their Eye of Ugins and Eldrazi Temples now or if they should hold them until some point in time we felt was ideal. I won’t speak for the other writers, but I’ve been asked this question not only on Aristocrats, but also Twitter, in Reddit threads and article comments…really, anywhere I have a presence, I get asked this question. It’s not always those two cards, and it’s not always this time of the year, but it’s a frequent inquiry. It doesn’t even need to be a recently spiked card, but instead a staple such as Snapcaster Mage. And while that question gets asked year round, it happens most frequently about a month before the February Modern Pro Tour, which this year happens to be Pro Tour Oath of the Gatewatch.

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14 thoughts on “PROTRADER: Playing Chicken”

  1. Please can you turn on downloads for your SoundCloud audio tracks? Do you have plans to sort out an RSS feed? I consider that to be highly necessary for a podcast.

    Thank you.

  2. Again with the broken pictures.

    Editor: please note the problem with pictures that got fixed on Douglas Johnson’s Mindslicer article (21st Jan) has recurred today on both this article, and on Jason’s Alticle.

      1. While the pictures work for me now, too I can second Charles’s comment about the broken pictures. This has been an ongoing glitch over the past week, maybe two now.

  3. If a card doesn’t spike right after the Pro Tour, would a GP provide enough coverage to cause it to spike later in the year? Or is the Pro Tour really the only milestone on that ride? I ask because there are 4 GP’s (one is an SCG Open) between the end of February and the end of May.

    1. GPs shift prices in one of two ways; either a card breaks out and spikes, or there’s a general frenzy ahead of the event and the entire format gets more expensive. We’ve seen it the last few years ahead of the major Modern GP weekend. We’ve experienced some tremendous Modern growth over the last two or three weeks, so it’s hard to know whether this coming GP will spur the same excitement we’ve seen in years past.

      1. So maybe I’ll make my question more pointed; if something does not spike right after the PT, is it worth the risk of holding and watching it go down 10-20% between the PT and the spring GP’s to see if it will spike *then*?

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