A note to all Heritage "Snipers"
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38 posts in this topic

21 hours ago, malvin said:

well, assuming that the objective is to win, I guess people do it thinking some people will indeed back off or get demoralized.  

Clearly it doesn't work on Mike, he just gets annoyed and maybe even bid stronger!

What we need to prove the hypothesis is for someone to admit that they back off or get demoralized and not bid when it happens to them!

Malvin

I suddenly have an urge to get a commission of an enraged Hulk mashing the bid button. Hulk strongest bidder there is!!

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6 minutes ago, Latverian Tourism Board said:

I suddenly have an urge to get a commission of an enraged Hulk mashing the bid button. Hulk strongest bidder there is!!

I am going to wait for the last second to bid against you every time on such a piece! 

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Shouldn't you be happy for a competitor taking this approach? It just increases the likelihood that they will not time it right, get distracted, lose their connection, etc. and not be able to get in a bid against you. They are rolling the dice waiting. 

Edited by JadeGiant

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1 minute ago, JadeGiant said:

Shouldn't you be happy for a competitor taking this approach? It just increases the likelihood that they will not time it right, get distracted, lose their connection, etc. and not be able to get in a bid against you. They are rolling the dice waiting. 

Exactly. It’s not worth getting worked up over these kinds of things, imo. Another page will be along soon enough, and who needs the added aggravation nowadays? 

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18 minutes ago, www.alexgross.com said:

all i know is that when i bid my max ahead of time, the item miraculously reaches that max bid before the live bidding even ensues. even when i'm well above market price (talking graded books now). i'll never pre-bid on HA again. 

I often pre-bid. I almost never pre-bid my max, however. I do like to shake out potential bidders in opposition, and while it is by no means foolproof, it tends to result in a level of response. If you actually follow the bidding on lesser pieces, they don’t always beat a high proxy, which also has the effect of sometimes intimidating bidders. Every number you throw up gets immediately topped can get demoralizing. 

Each auction is unique, and I pay attention to trackers and bid sequences to frame any bid.

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7 minutes ago, Rick2you2 said:

I often pre-bid. I almost never pre-bid my max, however. I do like to shake out potential bidders in opposition, and while it is by no means foolproof, it tends to result in a level of response. If you actually follow the bidding on lesser pieces, they don’t always beat a high proxy, which also has the effect of sometimes intimidating bidders. Every number you throw up gets immediately topped can get demoralizing. 

Each auction is unique, and I pay attention to trackers and bid sequences to frame any bid.

So you like to emphasize, or add to, bid sequences to discourage other bidders on an item? If I’m understanding correctly, that’s interesting. I’d never thought of it like that before. This board is a cool resource for guys like me trying to “get” the OA market. 

I’m not the type to get worked up or needled into an action, but early and quick over-bids have definitely pushed me off a piece. 

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In general, it may not pay to just bid once with your maximum.  During Heritage Live, if you're outbid during early lots, you can reallocate those $$$ to later lots.  So, if it's just a matter of bidding and counterbidding and never waiting for the 5 second countdown, we're basically talking about 10 seconds or so.

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I've never bid at Heritage but I gather that late bidding extends the auction, or did I read that wrongly?

I can also see this working if the end-of-auction time is inconvenient for a bidder. If they have a previous engagement to be at that goes up against their auction, they may not be able to continue fighting in a bidding war.

Many of us will bid our "max" bids and let that be it, but if that's the case then you don't have to be there and watch the seconds count down on your auction, right? You can set it and forget it until later that day when you can simply look and see if you won or not. But for those of us that don't place our max bids up front, or for whose "max" can increase "just a little more," these end-of-auction snipe bid wars happen.

There's a Japanese auction I sometimes participate in that often has inconvenient end times for me, so I often have to set my max bid and hope I win. But there have been times I've been able to watch the end, and have been caught up in just this type of war, even though the clock extends as last-minute bids come in. One time there were a number of signed scripts (TV show) that were up and I really wanted at least one, though of course I would've been happy with multiples. The bids were low until the end, at which point, I assumed, 1 other bidder tried to take them all. We kept fighting and upping all our bids, until finally I was getting close to my max limit. I basically did what @Sideshow Bob did, and stared up-bidding everything else in order to focus on winning 1 -script. I had up-bid one -script to the point I was winning, and then got outbid again (past my max this time), but it gave me a benchmark to know what the other bidder had likely placed as his max on the other scripts. So I bid all of them up to just below that benchmark except one, which was my target to win. Sure enough, I had bid under on all of them. Finally, I bid above the benchmark, but still below (or maybe at, I can't fully recall) my max on the one remaining -script, hoping that with the amount of $$$ the other bidder was now going to pay for all the others, they'd let me win the one. And thankfully, they did!

But just imagine if I could have messaged the other bidder beforehand? We probably could have worked out a deal where they got all but 1, and I got my 1, for MUCH cheaper. But that's not how auctions work, unfortunately. Which is why shill bidding sucks so bad. Auctions are a different beast than direct sales, and they can go for or against buyers and sellers, or in a perfect world, be great for both. But that's part of the game. The seller was likely very happy with how this one turned out.

 

Edited by BuraddoRun
typos

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6 hours ago, Latverian Tourism Board said:

So you like to emphasize, or add to, bid sequences to discourage other bidders on an item? If I’m understanding correctly, that’s interesting. I’d never thought of it like that before. This board is a cool resource for guys like me trying to “get” the OA market. 

I’m not the type to get worked up or needled into an action, but early and quick over-bids have definitely pushed me off a piece. 

You have to be careful with that one. It can drive the final winning bid to a point well above expected market. That has happened to me on occasion.
I generally watch the bidding rounds early on to get a sense of what may be happening later. When the full Phantom Stranger Aparo story went up for bids, there was an immediate bid of $5,000, and that was well below market. But then, it just sat like a lump at that price for weeks. It only moved a little, pre-live bidding, which confirmed my suspicions this was not a hot property (and leads me to question whether that first bid was real, or an attempt to motivate bidding). Sure enough, it came in where I expected.

The point is, what worked there may not work on other rounds. Is the artist or property hot, or at the bottom of the market? Are prices consistently moving up, pre-bid, or not? Does it look like there is a fight between two other bidders? How many people are tracking, and how many started tracking early? And sometimes, you just role the dice.

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11 minutes ago, Rick2you2 said:

You have to be careful with that one. It can drive the final winning bid to a point well above expected market. That has happened to me on occasion.
I generally watch the bidding rounds early on to get a sense of what may be happening later. When the full Phantom Stranger Aparo story went up for bids, there was an immediate bid of $5,000, and that was well below market. But then, it just sat like a lump at that price for weeks. It only moved a little, pre-live bidding, which confirmed my suspicions this was not a hot property (and leads me to question whether that first bid was real, or an attempt to motivate bidding). Sure enough, it came in where I expected.

The point is, what worked there may not work on other rounds. Is the artist or property hot, or at the bottom of the market? Are prices consistently moving up, pre-bid, or not? Does it look like there is a fight between two other bidders? How many people are tracking, and how many started tracking early? And sometimes, you just role the dice.

Very interesting. Thank you for taking the time to explain. I play a good bit of poker—well, before last March—and I hadn’t thought of applying the concept of reading your opponent in that way. Early bids sitting like that is an especially nice clue I hadn’t considered like that. Would you apply this level of thinking to weekly auctions, as well?

Edited by Latverian Tourism Board

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5 hours ago, BuraddoRun said:

I basically did what @Sideshow Bob did, and stared up-bidding everything else in order to focus on winning 1 --script. I had up-bid one --script to the point I was winning, and then got outbid again (past my max this time), but it gave me a benchmark to know what the other bidder had likely placed as his max on the other scripts. So I bid all of them up to just below that benchmark except one, which was my target to win. Sure enough, I had bid under on all of them. Finally, I bid above the benchmark, but still below (or maybe at, I can't fully recall) my max on the one remaining --script, hoping that with the amount of $$$ the other bidder was now going to pay for all the others, they'd let me win the one. And thankfully, they did!

(worship) Sensei

Figuring out what your competitor's max is on items that you don't even care about, and then pushing them right up to that level to tie up their funds so they can't go as hard on the piece that you actually want, is the ultimate in auction tactics. 

Unfortunately, it only works in auctions like ComicConnect where multiple auctions can be closing at the same time.  It doesn't work in sequential auctions like Heritage's live auctions where pieces come up one at a time.  If the piece you want comes up early in the auction, there's no ability to deter them by tying up their funds in later pieces. 

Then, the only thing you can do with your information is punish bid your competitor! :devil:  

I remember years ago when the John McLaughlin collection came up on Heritage and there was a big bidder going hard after all the Church books in the auction.  Dealers who were there quickly figured out his pricing formula and drove him up to the max on every single lot.  Much blood was spilt on that day.   

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4 hours ago, Latverian Tourism Board said:

Early bids sitting like that is an especially nice clue I hadn’t considered like that.

Early bids mean a lot except when they don't.  I wouldn't read too much into early bidding, particularly on a desirable piece.  In fact, I would say the more desirable a piece, the less meaningful the early bidding action is.

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9 hours ago, Latverian Tourism Board said:

Very interesting. Thank you for taking the time to explain. I play a good bit of poker—well, before last March—and I hadn’t thought of applying the concept of reading your opponent in that way. Early bids sitting like that is an especially nice clue I hadn’t considered like that. Would you apply this level of thinking to weekly auctions, as well?

Yes, but it does not happen as much there, I think. Besides, the stuff I usually bid on doesn’t attract much interest. I find just the presence of much interest to be curious— and something which is suspicious. Popular pieces are more likely to generate over enthusiastic bidding. 

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5 hours ago, tth2 said:

Early bids mean a lot except when they don't.  I wouldn't read too much into early bidding, particularly on a desirable piece.  In fact, I would say the more desirable a piece, the less meaningful the early bidding action is.

I agree with you, to the point made. Desirable pieces operate under their own rules, and they can have lots of people waiting on the sidelines waiting to jump in. A little like really pretty girls. But many pieces don’t rise to that level. For example, the final price after live bidding on popular pieces can look nothing like the last number on pre-bidding. On more common or less attractive pieces, it is rarely over 4x the pre-bid price, and often within 2x. But again, each bid round is unique and you have to look for the clues you can find. Same with eBay, where you have different rules and available information.

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On 11/21/2020 at 8:16 PM, Will_K said:

If the strategy works at all, it only would be if it's 2 live bidders going at it.  If the top bid is from an Internet bid then the live bidder has to keep going until the Internet bid has been beaten.

Or, you can drop the now overpriced dead donkey on him and go for the next one on your list. There is a certain pleasure which can come from that.

Edited by Rick2you2

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