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Cover image for An analysis of the $80 million Xbox Series S/X Scalping Market

An analysis of the $80 million Xbox Series S/X Scalping Market

driscoll42 profile image Michael Driscoll Updated on ・6 min read

Source Code for Data Scraping: https://github.com/driscoll42/ebayScraper

This article is a continuation of my analysis of the scalping market.

Summary:

  • 6.85% of all Xboxes sold in US resold on eBay/StockX (through 1/16)
  • 113,220 Xboxes sold on eBay/StockX
  • $79.68 million in sales on eBay/StockX for $14.57 million in profit for scalpers and $10.4 million for eBay/PayPal/StockX
  • Prices now about 150% MSRP for both consoles and sales/day down to 100/300 a day from the Series S and X respectively on eBay
  • Xbox One S resale prices have increased ~33% and One X prices have remained relatively stable

Methodology:
As this gets asked a fair amount on how I avoid fake listings:

  • This analysis is only for sold listings.
  • I scanned the listings for the words image, picture, mpeg, paper, "Box only", "read description", which are indicators they're fake.
  • Anything below MSRP I tossed out.
  • Anything for a suspicious account, less than 10 feedback I manually checked.
  • I looked at all the lowest 100 or so listings each few days to validate.
  • I've been doing this every few days since December. Did I get every single listing? Surely not, but I'm very confident I got the vast majority.

The headline is that 6.85% of all Xboxes sold since launch have been resold on eBay or StockX, as according to VGChartz 1.562 million Xboxes have been sold in the US through 1/16, while on eBay/StockX 109,948 had been sold in the same time frame. And, guessing here, once we include FB Marketplace, Craigslist, various Discords, subreddits, Twitter DMs, etc... the number has to be well north of 10%, I would guess 15-20%, but I can only point to data on that first 6.84%.

Prices significantly dropped just before Christmas, I assume people were overspending to get a console to give as a present, but the pricing has slowly been increasing lately. However, the pricing doesn’t tell the whole story, when looking at the number of sales per day there has been a dramatic drop off, the Series S is now about 100/day from an average of 300/day before and the Series X down to about 200/day from averaging closer to 800/day. I believe those who wanted the consoles got them, and now those whose patience is finally running out.

Xbox Median Pricing

Xbox Series S

Xbox Series X

Console Graph MSRP Total Sold Median Price Past Week Median Price Casual Scalper Break Even Sophisticated Scalper Break Even Total Sales Estimated eBay/PayPal Profits Estimated Scalper Profits
Xbox Series S $299 18,339 $460 $438 $385 $304 $8,572,490 $2,379,638 $1,292,467
Xbox Series X $499 50,990 $836 $750 $639 $507 $43,253,936 $5,518,138 $9,171,837
Total N/A 69,329 N/A N/A N/A N/A $51,826,425 $7,897,776 $10,464,304

StockX is nearly as large a seller of Xboxes as eBay, with 63% the number sales as eBay, over $27 million in sales dollars.

Console Total Sold Average Sales Price Last Week Average Price Total Sales Volume Estimated StockX Profits Estimated Scalper Profits
Xbox Series S 12,635 $416 $405 $5,256,160 $473,054 $579,599
Xbox Series X 31,256 $723 $630 $22,598,088 $2,033,828 $3,523,880
Total 43,891 N/A N/A $27,854,248 $2,506,882 $4,103,479

Xbox Series X Cumulative Plot

For the cumulative sales/profits, profits have nearly leveled off for scalpers, still plenty for them but they are no longer profiting quite so much, though this is more due to sales volume decreasing than pricing going down.

Below are the weekly eBay and StockX sales compared to the VGChartz sales of that week. I did have to estimate the StockX # sold each week, using the eBay number as a proxy and using the ratio, which the totals are below. These numbers combine the Xbox Series S and X. The most interesting trend is that more people are turning to resell their consoles each week compared to the total sold commercially.

Week Weekly US Sold Cumulative Total Sold in US Weekly eBay Sold Cumulative eBay Sold % sold on eBay of US Cumulative Estimated Weekly StockX totals Estimated Weekly StockX % Est Total %
14-Nov 715262 715262 14934 14934 2.09% 9450 1.32% 3.41%
21-Nov 56264 771526 6612 21546 2.79% 13634 1.77% 4.56%
28-Nov 64734 836260 6522 28068 3.36% 17761 2.12% 5.48%
5-Dec 119381 955641 8358 36426 3.81% 23050 2.41% 6.22%
12-Dec 139849 1095490 8674 45100 4.12% 28539 2.61% 6.72%
19-Dec 167536 1263026 8192 53292 4.22% 33723 2.67% 6.89%
26-Dec 142812 1405838 5226 58518 4.16% 37030 2.63% 6.80%
2-Jan 99837 1505675 3506 62024 4.12% 39248 2.61% 6.73%
9-Jan 56804 1562479 2838 64862 4.15% 41044 2.63% 6.78%
16-Jan 45443 1607922 2604 67466 4.20% 42692 2.66% 6.85%

Xbox Seller Feedback

Much the same as the computer hardware, the most common seller feedback is in the 100-499 range, and about 9% of the listings are likely scams with sellers having <10 feedback.

Xbox eBay Seller Sales vs Total Sold

At least 28% or even up to 45% of all the Xbox sales are 1-2 sellers. Now this could just be the case that scalpers are making secondary accounts to throw off the scent, but that would not line up with the sales feedback distribution. I believe a number of people just got a console and figured it was in their best interest to sell it rather than use it.

Xbox One Median Pricing

Looking at the Xbox One S/X, there was a drop and then spike in sales after the Series S/X shortly after launched, which I am not too surprised as people were selling their old consoles when they got a new one, especially given the backwards compatibility, but the increase in price is surprising. It could be contributed to more “bundles” as people are selling their consoles with much of their games perhaps.

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