Concerns regarding the recent sales tax increase

As most of you are aware, recently is sales tax increase was implemented in all NPC stations from 5% to 8% - 11% depending on your standings. As my understanding goes this is intended to serve as an ISK sink, which for all intents and purposes I’m not against, however this was very poorly implemented in my opinion considering that in practice it represents a 50% increase in the cost of sales in NPC stations while player owned remain, for the most part unaffected. This goes directly against the tax relief it was introduced a couple months ago that was designed to encourage trading in NPC stations instead of privately owned structures like TTT in Perimeter or any other structures set in adjacent systems to major trading hubs and considering the decreasing player count shown in recent times This constant flip flop of views by CCP regarding the economy of their game is rather concerning as it appears like they’re worried I’m making it harder for Alpha players to make any sort of reasonable income and I don’t think that most of them are willing to put one or two extra hours in their gaming sessions in order to make the same amount of cash they did previously.

From my point of view there are three outcomes from this decision long term:

  1. There will be a generalized increase in prices of items to compensate the increase of taxes, resulting in a zero-sum gain for sellers in NPC stations.

  2. Both sellers and buyers will move their business to player-owned structures on a bigger scale than we are seeing now, making the increased tax isk sink useless.

  3. Both new and old players will find it harder and harder to make isk and progress in the game if nothing remains unchanged after this and some of them will quit the game, which is something I believe nobody wants.

I would like to tell you I have a solution for this, but sadly so far I do not. We’ll just have to wait and see where things go from here a few months down the line

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A few points of correction.

  1. It’s an Isk sink, not a faucet
  2. The sales tax applies equally between NPC stations and citadels
  3. The reduced broker fee means that, with max standings, sales listings will have the same broker fee between NPC stations and citadels

This tax rate change shifts the balance of taxes (and therefore isk sinks) to sales tax rather than broker fees. This means that NPC stations are now directly competing with citadels at max standings, thus (for high skill / trade focussed characters) it is better to base at Jita over TTT as the increased volume is no longer offset by higher taxes. Oh, and the overall marginal rate of tax with max skills/standings is also lower in totality compared to pre-tax cut.

It also moves the trading style more towards margin trading, as the reduced relist costs compared to the pre-tax cut rates make this more viable.

In short, I think your concerns are well meaning, but not strictly accurate. Hopefully that alleviates some of your worry!


Death and taxes.

Eve is real.


Yes… it does go directly against that. Because the drive to get people to not use player structures was only meant to be temporary as part of scarcity. With scarcity ending they are adding back the incentive to use player structures.

Thank you for clarifying my confusion regarding the faucet\ sink point, I had the two mixed up :slight_smile:

I still think this could have been better implemented, perhaps in a more gradual way and as you point out, characters with Max standings will benefit from this but considering the game needs new players in order to keep the economy healthy, having the cards stacked against Alpha players might prove detrimental in the long run as they still play a major role in the grand scheme of things

By design alphas are not supposed to be economically viable. This is why things like barges pi, industry jobs, market orders ect. Are all limited to outright restricted. Players running the demo need to have as little impact on the economy as possible.

Okay, so I think there are arguments that can be made against the increased taxes, however, I don’t find yours all that compelling. Moreover, some of the points that you’re trying to make aren’t very clear.

So, first up, what are you trying to say here?

Now, for your bullet points:

  1. Yes, prices will likely rise in order to compensate for sales taxes. However, I’m not sure exactly what you’re trying to say about this resulting in a zero sum gain for sellers.
  2. Yes, this will result in an increase in offshoring. However, it does not make the increased tax sink useless. Many players sell out of NPC stations, especially in locations where sellers can’t defend their structures or even anchor them to begin with, and even when there is a player owned station, many players will still make heavy use of NPC stations because of things like increased safety and customer traffic. And, quite honestly, this isn’t even something that we have to debate about because we’ve already seen players continue to use NPC stations when structure owners were allowed to set their taxes much lower than they are now.
  3. And number 3 is a serious leap in logic. Increased sales taxes will just get passed on to the consumers. This might slightly depress spending, but it isn’t going to stop people from making money.

Now, there is a debate concerning whether or not offshoring is good for the game. I know it’s not one of the concerns you mentioned, but it is something that other people are worried about when it comes to the tax changes. So, it is probably worth discussing.

Personally, I think that offshoring has worked out amazingly across most of Eve. In fact, I don’t think I’ve heard anyone assert that it has been a bad thing for most of new eden. The problem, however, is that many see the TTT as a source of free isk for the nullblocs -they don’t have to fight for it, and it doesn’t encourage conflict. However, I’m not sure that that’s the right way to look at things. First off, they did fight for it. And the fact that they don’t have to constantly keep fighting for it doesn’t mean that they didn’t earn it. Look at it this way, if a corp evicts another corp out of a wormhole and then starts crabing in that wormhole, no one starts complaining about it being free money that that corp doesn’t deserve. But that’s the argument that they’re making with the TTT. Second, the money from the TTT is indeed used to fuel conflicts and create content. That conflict might not be over the TTT itself, but that doesn’t mean that it is not funding conflicts elsewhere.

Finally, my personal concern with the changes is that they will result in a return to frequent price changes (i.e. the 1 isk war). However, I’m going to have to wrap things up here. So, that’s going to have to wait for another post, if you want to continue discussing this particular point.
No P2W

And I agree they should have as little impact as possible, however I’m going to take a gamble and say they also are a big portion of the playerbase, and they should be encouraged to stick around for as long as possible, spending as much isk as possible in order to keep the economy going, giving them content they see as worth doing instead of the mindless grindfest most of them go through to plex an account (aka grind anomalies in a gila)

But if my alpha can be even remotely competitive in market pvp I will just make dozens of them rather than losing profits on the plex needed to keep my market alts running

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I don’t want Alphas to dominate market PVP either, I just want them to feel motivated to play long term, hopefully be coming Omegas in the future, but if a game expects a player to climb a mountain before he can start having fun that’s a big Hail Mary to pull off

I didn’t touch high level market trading for almost 2 years into the game. You can play it perfectly fine without min maxing the market. It’s not making them struggle, hell it’s far less limiting than not allowing the use of t2 ammo.

This part is intentional.

Yes it is intentional but considering CCP wants to attract new players to the game. Is it the best option to take?

I’m really not sure what kind of market trading activities you’re expecting Alphas to get involved in, but the additional 3% sales tax shouldn’t really impact the vast majority - either the absolute amount of isk is pretty low, or they’re trying to play big boy volume trading and were doomed to fail anyway.

The best bet for Alphas is what I call “fat tax” for folks who CBA moving from TTT to Jita. But I’ll not dwell too much on that, can’t be giving the game away.

Assuming that’s the purpose behind the tax increase was to create a money sink CCP chose perhaps the least effective way of doing so considering the abyss brings in a ton of money through the triglavian survey data drops

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Well, by moving the balance of tax to sales rather than broker, there will be a small uptick in taxes (i.e. sink) as sales tax is charged on sales to buy orders, whereas immediate sales do not pay the broker fee.

However, I think the real reason for the change was to make Jita 4-4 remain competitive with TTT for the larger traders post-tax cut, without being too harsh or restrictive about it. It’s not a direct ‘nerf’ to citadel trading, but it does remove the main incentive to large-scale traders setting up shop in a player owned structure - reduced taxes.

There will be other consequences I’m sure - an uptick in margin trading and some more 0.1isking going on, for example - but for the most part it’s an attempt to make trading at player owned structures a choice that major market dudes make, rather than the only rational place to do business.

Am I mistaken that the tax changes don’t affect the player owned brokerage fees? Like previously they were 1% and after the change they still remain 1% - or have I got that wrong?

Brokerage fees remain the same at 1% yes, the only increase is the sales tax from the previous 5% to 8%

I just tried to sell something at an IChooseYou citadel advertising 1% broker fee (as I have for the past year) and it says the fee is now 4.76%. I also checked an NPC station which is meant to be now less than 3% and it also says 4.76% for the broker fee.

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Seems the issue is in Gallente space, as there is no problem with the Forge