Three Marketplace Observations: Don’t Fall for FOMO

by Joseph Overaitis

I am constantly providing readers information to help you navigate the comic book marketplace.  Part of that information is reporting on comic book auctions outside of eBay and Heritage.  These marketplace observations may be useful to the readers.

Free Comic Book Day Books Hitting the Market

Batman Beyond #1 is a hot book.  This is because this book contains the first appearance of Terry McGinnis.  Collectors are trying to find this book because of interest in recent storylines.   In addition, rumors of a cinematic appearance are also driving interest in the book. This book is very hot, and yet I see sellers and buyers ignoring an important publication fact.   The fact is that this book has several different editions and yet I see buyers bidding as if there is only one edition.

29-1-225x300 Three Marketplace Observations: Don't Fall for FOMOA  surge of variant Batman Beyond #1 issues released a few months after the normal edition on 1999 as  free comic book promotions have come to market in recent months.  These books are all raw and reported to be in NM condition.  The going price for these books has been $150-$200 without the auction premium. This issue has no bar code in the lower left hand corner.  A blank white rectangular box appears instead of the barcode on the normal first edition.  A 2nd Printing of Batman Beyond #1 also exists. This version has no barcode or white box on the cover.  Please note that the 2nd printing rates the second most expensive first appearance of Terry McGinnis, but I have yet to see this book appear in a recent live auction.

Investors should make note of these different variants and printings.  Some sellers are not and I have seen buyers pay for these books as if they were the normal first printing edition.

First Issues Spike

GoCollect has reported the incredible priceseyJidWNrZXQiOiJnb2NvbGxlY3QuaW1hZ2VzLnB1YiIsImtleSI6ImRkNzlkY2E2LWIwM2ItNGFiMy1hZmUzLWI0NDhlMWI3MjAyMi5qcGciLCJlZGl0cyI6W119-193x300 Three Marketplace Observations: Don't Fall for FOMO being paid for Albedo #2.  This book contains the first appearance of Usagi Yojimbo.  Investors have taken notice of this sale.  I have observed an influx of Usagi Yojimbo #1 books come up for sale at non-eBay and Heritage Auctions in recent months.  The reason is that many investors have been either priced out of Albedo #2 or they can not find it.  As a result, the first issue of his series is now gaining traction.  For example, I saw a raw copy sell for $380.  This was in spite of the fact that no amateur grading was attributed to the book in the auction item’s description.  Another copy of this book sold for less than $10 dollars at a different auction that was again raw and not graded two years ago.

This trend was observed before with Ms. Marvel and the MCU.  Her first appearance as Carol Danvers in Marvel Super-Heroes #13 was the hottest book out in the market.  Investors who wanted to avoid the price spikes ventured out to purchase Carol Danvers’ first appearance as Ms. Marvel in Ms. Marvel #1.  Using my own marketplace observations, I believe we are seeing a similar trend now.  Buyers want to invest in the character but cannot find the true first appearance. Instead, they are moving to alternate books. This may be a smart move.  I still advise people to take this strategy with Usagi Yojimbo #1. You must watch the market to see the downward trend that could occur. Noting your marketplace observations can help you see trends more easily.

The real question is if this character has short or long term viability.

Star Wars Forces The Market

eyJidWNrZXQiOiJnb2NvbGxlY3QuaW1hZ2VzLnB1YiIsImtleSI6IjdkODU4NTczLTE0NWUtNDZmOS04MDc1LWViMGQzZmY5ZjRhNS5qcGciLCJlZGl0cyI6W119-195x300 Three Marketplace Observations: Don't Fall for FOMOStar Wars is a force in the comic world.  One has to be blind not to see this trend.  The problem is what is hot out here.   This market segment is not having investors and speculators focusing on books with laser precision like those focused on MCU books.  Instead, investors and speculators are going after everything in a FOMO induced frenzy. Investors are seeking first appearances of characters without really focusing on something significant to make the character worthy of investment.

The “fear of missing out” is scary.  FOMO makes patterns unpredictable.  In one auction catalog, I observed that every first appearance of a Star Wars character was mentioned as if they were key books.  I have not seen this done for MCU or DCCU characters and yet for Star Wars’ characters, it is the norm.  I am a fan of Star Wars and even I find some of these purchases suspect. Hobbyists should not make the mistake that a minor character’s first appearance is significant only because they appear in the Star Wars Universe.   This is not done with DC, Marvel, or Independent minor character’s first appearance.  Buyers out here are ignoring that rule. One day they may be sorry for their choices.

So What Does This Mean?

GoCollect is a great tool for investors, collectors, and speculators.  The site presents data so hobbyists can see patterns that reflect what is happening in the market place. Our job as bloggers for the site is to sometimes draw attention to market place events that deviate from what the data is showing.  Right now what I am observing is that buyers are ignoring rules and going after books to be ahead of the curve.  As a result, prices are spiking on books that were once ignored.  What savvy hobbyists should do is ask if this is the right move at this time or if FOMO is forcing hobbyists to make riskier moves to realize a profit. Knowing the difference can protect you from making a bad mistake. Hopefully, these marketplace observations can help you out.

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9 comments

Tony January 29, 2021 - 9:15 am

Solid advice per usual 👍

Reply
Joesph Overaitis January 29, 2021 - 10:03 am

Tony

Sometimes you should not go for the home runs in blogging. Just hit the singles LOL

Reply
octoberland January 29, 2021 - 12:22 pm

This is what I tell my friends all the time. FOMO is real, especially in a space where a $10 book could become a $100 after a single tweet. Once a ship has sailed, don’t jump off the dock. Everyone’s “ship” is different, but learn to be content waiving goodbye while staying dry.

Great post and smart to call out the Batman Beyond book. It’s can be a subtle difference when scrolling through listings that gets overlooked or misunderstood.

– Craig Coffman

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Joesph Overaitis January 29, 2021 - 3:50 pm

Craig

Thanks for the comment. Your friend should listen to you. FOMO has been around for years in comic book history. LOL I remember a store told me to buy the “last” copy of a variant because it was hot.. I was young. I did. I went back to the store and the clerk tried to sell me another “last” copy. the new clerk did not realize another had talked me in to buying it. LOL

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octoberland January 29, 2021 - 4:37 pm

If your interested, I have the last copy of a variant 😉

TBH I still fall for FOMO as well. It takes time and discipline, which I am still working on. But I know I have gotten better. My weakness is SA/BA books.

They are not always easy to find anyway, so when prices start to take off it’s hard to remember I need check back and see if I am jumping in late. With somewhat infrequent listings that slow creep of time makes your starting point harder to see without squinting. Instead, it might just seem like a good price now but not compared to when I started looking. Like slowly turning up the volume, you adjust to the new level without concern. Which does not mean it is not a fine time to buy the book. I need to adjust expectations accordingly by looking at it historically to see if it’s left the dock.

All we can do is try to improve. I like that is the main goal of your articles.

– Craig Coffman

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dave stevens January 29, 2021 - 7:51 pm

The Batman Beyond was not a free comic book day book as it predated the first FCBD by three years. It is a nice book, but it does not compare to the original direct edition which still cannot hold a candle to a first print newsstand. It is still very desirable and should not be overlooked, just don’t buy it like it is a different variant than it is.

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Joesph Overaitis January 29, 2021 - 10:42 pm

Dave

You are right that it was not technically a FCBD giveaway. I found out that it was free giveaway precursor to FCBD according to a retailer that private messaged me. Apparently it was meant to draw in new fans to the comic book market that were attracted to the show. The store could put their information in the white box (like that would happen!!!) In reality he said most of the people who grabbed this issue were established fans. God I am kicking myself because I never got one!!!!!

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Alan January 29, 2021 - 8:30 pm

I agree that it is scary that so much money is being thrown at Star Wars books. Thanks for a helpful article!

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nigel smith January 31, 2021 - 5:02 am

There is an interesting parallel with trading on the stock market.Great analogy by Octoberland , i shall be waving more often after reading this

Reply

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