If you plug away at buying an NPC corp’s goods, for sale elsewhere at a profit maybe, even if a thin margin. And meeting it’s buy needs at a discount, does that have a positive outcome on the corp, or are they economically static?
They are economically static.
Sell orders are generally used to seed items that have no other source (skills, etc.) Buy orders are typically used as non-direct ISK faucets. An example of that is Blue Loot or Overseer Effects that have no other value in the game other than fulfilling a buy order from an NPC for ISK.
The interesting thing about this is that is does open up some opportunities for players to get involved that a pure ISK faucet would not provide:
- Things like Blue Loot (or the ships carrying them) can be ganked or destroyed
- Players can set buy orders slightly lower than the NPCs to entice players who don’t want to haul the items to sell
- Players can buy these items and move them closer to players (skill books or BPOs from specific regions, etc.) and sell them at a mark up.
But ultimately, this doesn’t impact the NPC corp itself in any way.
In earlier days NPC trade goods had a larger role. There are still a few, for example, you can buy Hydrogen Batteries from Duvolle Labs for 470 ISK and sell them to Minmatar Mining for 596.25 ISK - 21% margin isn’t bad. Absolutely no skill required and very little risk. There used to be NPC convoys carrying trade goods that you could gank but I haven’t seen one for several years and assume they’ve been removed from the game.
I still see npc convoys. I’ve never tried ganking them. But, I think you have to have your overview set up correctly to see them.
Or, just be lucky when you arrive at a station, and the convoy is there, too.
Trade Goods were used for more than just NPC Market orders, they were also used to construct Outposts in Alliance held Null Sec space.
Before even building an Outpost, an Outpost Platform had to be constructed first, then transported and anchored in space which would then be filled with various Trade Goods.
Minmatar Service Outpost Platform
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