Magic Market Index for April 5, 2019

Welcome to The Magic Market Index. This weekly article series documents the price changes of cards currently in print, and offers insight into what cards to invest in and what to ignore. This weekly article series covers all expansion sets and masterpiece series sets in Standard, from the time of their prerelease to the time of their rotation out of Standard. Promotional sets, special sets, pack foils, and non-set releases are not covered.

All pricing is based on TCGPlayer's Market Price.


Set Overview
Metric 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Rare Slot Average: $2.07$2.01$2.06$2.08$0.06$0.00
Buy-A-Box Promo: $3.60$3.60$6.60$3.79$0.00-$0.19
Total Set Value: $176.33$174.31$179.71$182.72$2.02-$6.39
Booster Box EV: $88.94$88.47$90.91$91.72$0.47-$2.78
Hit Over Miss: 235%235%235%234%-0.03%1.17%
Top 5 Movers
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Smothering Tithe $9.16$4.29$4.08$3.89$4.87$5.27
Kaya, Orzhov Usurper $11.25$8.80$8.04$7.30$2.45$3.95
Seraph of the Scales $6.36$7.39$7.77$8.18-$1.03-$1.82
Hydroid Krasis $21.27$22.04$24.18$26.25-$0.77-$4.98
Prime Speaker Vannifar $5.37$5.94$6.60$7.27-$0.57-$1.90
Top Cards
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Hydroid Krasis $21.27$22.04$24.18$26.25-$0.77-$4.98
Breeding Pool $11.49$11.11$11.44$10.97$0.38$0.52
Kaya, Orzhov Usurper $11.25$8.80$8.04$7.30$2.45$3.95
Smothering Tithe $9.16$4.29$4.08$3.89$4.87$5.27
Blood Crypt $8.81$8.66$8.86$8.60$0.15$0.21
Stomping Ground $8.71$8.72$8.41$8.14-$0.01$0.57
Godless Shrine $8.49$8.58$8.32$8.17-$0.09$0.32
Hallowed Fountain $7.13$7.21$7.31$7.24-$0.08-$0.11
Seraph of the Scales $6.36$7.39$7.77$8.18-$1.03-$1.82
Biogenic Ooze $5.41$5.56$6.26$6.62-$0.15-$1.21
Prime Speaker Vannifar $5.37$5.94$6.60$7.27-$0.57-$1.90
Bedevil $4.17$4.26$3.82$3.68-$0.09$0.49
Spawn of Mayhem $3.99$4.43$4.51$4.85-$0.44-$0.86
Dovin, Grand Arbiter $3.60$3.89$4.18$4.57-$0.29-$0.97
Skarrgan Hellkite $3.34$3.59$3.87$3.96-$0.25-$0.62
Domri, Chaos Bringer $3.30$3.47$3.31$4.14-$0.17-$0.84
Incubation Druid $2.92$2.96$2.85$3.15-$0.04-$0.23
Angel of Grace $2.79$2.76$2.92$3.20$0.03-$0.41
Deputy of Detention $2.02$2.20$2.56$2.47-$0.18-$0.45
 
Commentary

Smothering Tithe is one of this week's biggest winners, having doubled in price. Commander is the culprit here, as Tithe is becoming almost an auto-include in many decks that can run it. White is extremely low on mana ramp options, and Tithe ramps beautifully in the format's multiplayer setting. The spike has already started to level off, so investing now is definitely a gamble. It will most likely continue rise over time, but I expect this to only be minor while it's still in print.

The set as a whole remains strong. Expected value is still near cost, and the hit-over-miss reflects a very low variability between boxes.

Set Overview
Metric 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Rare Slot Average: $2.20$2.27$2.26$2.30-$0.07-$0.10
Buy-A-Box Promo: $3.17$3.17$3.37$3.73$0.00-$0.56
Total Set Value: $178.19$186.01$186.19$190.96-$7.82-$12.77
Booster Box EV: $90.51$98.18$99.61$101.91-$7.67-$11.40
Hit Over Miss: 223%223%221%229%-0.34%-5.58%
Top 5 Movers
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Arclight Phoenix $21.00$23.04$23.72$27.31-$2.04-$6.31
Watery Grave $10.76$10.07$10.09$10.14$0.69$0.62
Doom Whisperer $6.81$7.38$7.21$7.43-$0.57-$0.62
Divine Visitation $6.96$7.45$6.80$8.08-$0.49-$1.12
Risk Factor $3.80$4.29$4.13$4.37-$0.49-$0.57
Top Cards
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Arclight Phoenix $21.00$23.04$23.72$27.31-$2.04-$6.31
Steam Vents $11.25$11.62$11.59$11.42-$0.37-$0.17
Watery Grave $10.76$10.07$10.09$10.14$0.69$0.62
Assassin's Trophy $9.97$10.25$9.92$9.43-$0.28$0.54
Divine Visitation $6.96$7.45$6.80$8.08-$0.49-$1.12
Doom Whisperer $6.81$7.38$7.21$7.43-$0.57-$0.62
Sacred Foundry $6.64$6.66$6.43$6.40-$0.02$0.24
Overgrown Tomb $6.08$6.14$6.30$6.32-$0.06-$0.24
Temple Garden $5.09$5.09$5.17$5.13$0.00-$0.04
Vraska, Golgari Queen $4.85$4.69$4.46$4.07$0.16$0.78
Chromatic Lantern $4.64$4.56$4.36$4.03$0.08$0.61
Thief of Sanity $4.60$4.61$4.90$4.53-$0.01$0.07
Ral, Izzet Viceroy $4.55$4.50$4.24$4.55$0.05$0.00
Risk Factor $3.80$4.29$4.13$4.37-$0.49-$0.57
March of the Multitudes $3.51$3.50$3.35$3.42$0.01$0.09
Niv-Mizzet, Parun $3.28$3.68$3.96$4.63-$0.40-$1.35
Aurelia, Exemplar of Justice $3.17$3.15$3.11$3.04$0.02$0.13
Nullhide Ferox $3.05$3.30$3.38$3.68-$0.25-$0.63
Knight of Autumn $2.88$3.17$3.22$3.19-$0.29-$0.31
Beast Whisperer $2.79$2.76$2.89$2.66$0.03$0.13
Thousand-Year Storm $2.74$2.81$2.90$2.87-$0.07-$0.13
Expansion // Explosion $2.70$2.61$2.63$2.47$0.09$0.23
Midnight Reaper $2.56$2.74$2.79$2.87-$0.18-$0.31
Legion Warboss $2.31$2.35$2.41$2.19-$0.04$0.12
 
Commentary
Guilds took a rather hard hit this week. The set's expected box value had been hovering near the $100 mark for some time, but that came crashing back down close to box cost this week. We're still in a profitable area with good stability, though. Even with Arclight Phoenix above $20, trying to eat up as much set value as it can, there remains a large number of money cards in the set. I fully expect this dip to level out quickly and Guilds to have a small bounce back in the next two weeks. There's simply too many good, sellable cards here for it to continue to fall.
Set Overview
Metric 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Rare Slot Average: $1.42$1.37$1.38$1.38$0.05$0.04
Buy-A-Box Promo: $17.58$17.58$17.67$17.83$0.00-$0.25
Total Set Value: $157.61$152.31$152.55$153.45$5.30$4.16
Booster Box EV: $60.73$58.95$58.70$57.57$1.78$3.16
Hit Over Miss: 269%284%285%300%-15.21%-31.35%
Top 5 Movers
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Liliana, Untouched by Death $11.37$4.07$4.05$3.68$7.30$7.69
Vivien Reid $19.07$21.01$20.73$22.59-$1.94-$3.52
Ajani, Adversary of Tyrants $9.63$10.69$9.84$9.84-$1.06-$0.21
Death Baron $2.59$1.92$1.97$1.85$0.67$0.74
Crucible of Worlds $13.72$13.15$12.94$12.76$0.57$0.96
Top Cards
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Vivien Reid $19.07$21.01$20.73$22.59-$1.94-$3.52
Nicol Bolas, the Ravager $16.48$16.25$16.36$16.52$0.23-$0.04
Crucible of Worlds $13.72$13.15$12.94$12.76$0.57$0.96
Liliana, Untouched by Death $11.37$4.07$4.05$3.68$7.30$7.69
Ajani, Adversary of Tyrants $9.63$10.69$9.84$9.84-$1.06-$0.21
Resplendent Angel $9.29$9.51$10.87$11.17-$0.22-$1.88
Sarkhan, Fireblood $7.09$7.16$7.62$7.83-$0.07-$0.74
Arcades, the Strategist $7.04$7.12$6.92$6.77-$0.08$0.27
Scapeshift $6.91$6.83$6.91$6.71$0.08$0.20
Omniscience $5.74$5.78$5.55$5.51-$0.04$0.23
Tezzeret, Artifice Master $5.53$5.48$5.11$5.11$0.05$0.42
Cleansing Nova $3.21$3.58$3.68$3.58-$0.37-$0.37
Banefire $3.11$3.04$3.28$3.63$0.07-$0.52
Elvish Clancaller $2.72$2.60$2.80$2.68$0.12$0.04
Death Baron $2.59$1.92$1.97$1.85$0.67$0.74
 
Commentary
Did you know that the upcoming War of the Spark has a large number of Zombies, Zombie token makers, and even a Zombie mechanic? If so, Liliana, Untouched by Death's spike should come as no surprise. Although one of the major themes of the set is Planeswalkers, the Zombie army of Bolas is the other omnipresent subject of the set. Liliana benefits from both motifs, and there's a good chance that this spike may only the beginning of her rise.
Set Overview
Metric 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Rare Slot Average: $1.82$1.76$1.79$1.90$0.05-$0.08
Buy-A-Box Promo: $2.12$2.12$2.11$2.07$0.00$0.05
Total Set Value: $181.11$176.65$178.76$187.49$4.46-$6.38
Booster Box EV: $78.34$76.02$76.71$81.53$2.32-$3.19
Hit Over Miss: 339%338%353%349%1.18%-9.79%
Top 5 Movers
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Mox Amber $15.83$14.72$15.47$14.98$1.11$0.85
Hinterland Harbor $5.93$5.09$6.32$6.55$0.84-$0.62
Karn, Scion of Urza $17.43$16.96$16.49$18.17$0.47-$0.74
Lyra Dawnbringer $10.47$10.86$10.33$11.25-$0.39-$0.78
Woodland Cemetery $3.43$3.74$3.62$4.31-$0.31-$0.88
Top Cards
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Teferi, Hero of Dominaria $36.90$36.99$38.52$38.31-$0.09-$1.41
Karn, Scion of Urza $17.43$16.96$16.49$18.17$0.47-$0.74
Mox Amber $15.83$14.72$15.47$14.98$1.11$0.85
Lyra Dawnbringer $10.47$10.86$10.33$11.25-$0.39-$0.78
Sulfur Falls $6.80$6.63$7.13$9.48$0.17-$2.68
History of Benalia $5.98$5.94$6.39$9.02$0.04-$3.04
Hinterland Harbor $5.93$5.09$6.32$6.55$0.84-$0.62
Isolated Chapel $5.02$4.77$5.14$5.38$0.25-$0.36
Helm of the Host $3.94$3.65$3.78$3.74$0.29$0.20
Muldrotha, the Gravetide $3.58$3.47$3.51$3.37$0.11$0.21
Woodland Cemetery $3.43$3.74$3.62$4.31-$0.31-$0.88
Clifftop Retreat $3.39$3.44$3.52$3.91-$0.05-$0.52
Gilded Lotus $3.08$3.05$2.70$2.86$0.03$0.22
Oath of Teferi $3.01$2.85$3.03$1.89$0.16$1.12
Goblin Chainwhirler $3.00$2.86$3.03$3.98$0.14-$0.98
Shalai, Voice of Plenty $2.89$3.06$2.88$2.82-$0.17$0.07
Tempest Djinn $2.56$2.81$2.73$3.11-$0.25-$0.55
 
Commentary
The top four cards of Dominaria represent a quarter of a box's expected value, and only a handful of others exceed per-pack cost enough to offset duds. Thus, buying a box remains a gamble and the hit-over-miss illustrates this directly. Things continue to move in the right direction, with hit-over-miss generally trending down month to month, and expected value slowly rising. Stopping this from culminating to the point of profit, however, are the dips that keep hitting and undoing much of the gains. The set regains the lost ground only to dip again, barely moving up month to month. The short version is that we're gaining ground, but the set might very well rotate out before we get to the point that buying a box is truly viable.
Set Overview
Metric 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Rare Slot Average: $1.93$1.95$1.95$2.01-$0.02-$0.08
Buy-A-Box Promo: $0.15$0.15$0.13$0.13$0.00$0.02
Total Set Value: $172.51$174.68$175.72$181.22-$2.17-$8.71
Booster Box EV: $85.89$86.74$86.49$91.96-$0.84-$6.07
Hit Over Miss: 247%247%254%256%0.71%-8.33%
Top 5 Movers
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Elenda, the Dusk Rose $12.50$13.55$13.83$14.71-$1.05-$2.21
Zacama, Primal Calamity $8.54$9.31$8.81$8.81-$0.77-$0.27
Angrath, the Flame-Chained $8.96$9.58$10.26$12.06-$0.62-$3.10
Jadelight Ranger $3.91$4.41$4.65$6.47-$0.50-$2.56
Mastermind's Acquisition $1.79$1.37$1.39$1.25$0.42$0.54
Top Cards
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
The Immortal Sun $27.56$27.30$28.70$24.87$0.26$2.69
Rekindling Phoenix $14.37$14.18$14.38$18.32$0.19-$3.95
Elenda, the Dusk Rose $12.50$13.55$13.83$14.71-$1.05-$2.21
Angrath, the Flame-Chained $8.96$9.58$10.26$12.06-$0.62-$3.10
Zacama, Primal Calamity $8.54$9.31$8.81$8.81-$0.77-$0.27
Kumena, Tyrant of Orazca $7.27$7.29$7.10$7.18-$0.02$0.09
Twilight Prophet $7.09$7.22$6.98$6.98-$0.13$0.11
Wayward Swordtooth $5.32$5.14$5.36$5.20$0.18$0.12
Etali, Primal Storm $4.55$4.36$4.04$4.14$0.19$0.41
Huatli, Radiant Champion $4.47$4.46$4.26$4.38$0.01$0.09
Jadelight Ranger $3.91$4.41$4.65$6.47-$0.50-$2.56
Ghalta, Primal Hunger $3.84$3.98$3.85$3.99-$0.14-$0.15
Hadana's Climb $3.48$3.62$3.92$4.03-$0.14-$0.55
Azor's Gateway $3.33$3.44$3.65$3.45-$0.11-$0.12
Journey to Eternity $3.13$3.25$3.32$3.51-$0.12-$0.38
Polyraptor $3.02$2.91$2.96$2.86$0.11$0.16
Tendershoot Dryad $2.91$3.10$3.00$2.97-$0.19-$0.06
Dire Fleet Daredevil $2.87$2.92$2.53$2.88-$0.05-$0.01
Nezahal, Primal Tide $2.72$2.64$2.55$2.70$0.08$0.02
Curious Obsession $2.40$2.65$2.55$2.79-$0.25-$0.39
 
Commentary
Rivals has had a powerful run for over a year, but we're starting to see signs of real decline. We've finally dipped enough to reach box cost, no longer offering a stable profit margin. Booster box cases still have quite a healthy profit margin, but single-box investment has begun to be a small gamble if you're looking for profit alone.
Set Overview
Metric 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Rare Slot Average: $1.78$1.75$1.81$1.90$0.03-$0.12
Buy-A-Box Promo: $0.24$0.24$0.26$0.22$0.00$0.02
Total Set Value: $169.70$168.21$174.17$183.86$1.49-$14.16
Booster Box EV: $84.95$85.37$89.36$96.22-$0.42-$11.27
Hit Over Miss: 205%203%207%211%2%-5.79%
Top 5 Movers
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Search for Azcanta $14.45$13.50$14.58$14.74$0.95-$0.29
Growing Rites of Itlimoc $6.40$5.48$6.01$6.09$0.92$0.31
Glacial Fortress $5.34$5.97$5.70$5.58-$0.63-$0.24
Treasure Map $5.52$4.93$5.78$6.57$0.59-$1.05
Vraska, Relic Seeker $3.52$4.02$3.89$4.08-$0.50-$0.56
Top Cards
Card 04/04 03/28 03/21 03/14 ± Week ± Month
Search for Azcanta $14.45$13.50$14.58$14.74$0.95-$0.29
Carnage Tyrant $13.28$13.16$14.70$17.53$0.12-$4.25
Vraska's Contempt $7.87$7.55$8.19$8.40$0.32-$0.53
Drowned Catacomb $6.43$6.42$6.37$6.42$0.01$0.01
Growing Rites of Itlimoc $6.40$5.48$6.01$6.09$0.92$0.31
Treasure Map $5.52$4.93$5.78$6.57$0.59-$1.05
Glacial Fortress $5.34$5.97$5.70$5.58-$0.63-$0.24
Hostage Taker $5.04$5.12$5.41$4.80-$0.08$0.24
Star of Extinction $4.79$4.48$4.86$5.78$0.31-$0.99
Vanquisher's Banner $4.44$4.44$4.44$4.47$0.00-$0.03
Dragonskull Summit $4.35$4.43$4.58$4.43-$0.08-$0.08
Rootbound Crag $4.11$3.84$3.94$3.97$0.27$0.14
Legion's Landing $4.11$4.08$4.18$6.61$0.03-$2.50
Primal Amulet $3.72$3.84$3.60$3.68-$0.12$0.04
Settle the Wreckage $3.71$4.04$4.45$4.99-$0.33-$1.28
Sunpetal Grove $3.57$3.90$3.75$4.00-$0.33-$0.43
Vraska, Relic Seeker $3.52$4.02$3.89$4.08-$0.50-$0.56
Gishath, Sun's Avatar $3.23$3.07$3.19$3.10$0.16$0.13
Entrancing Melody $3.09$3.25$3.49$4.07-$0.16-$0.98
Siren Stormtamer $2.80$2.93$2.85$2.98-$0.13-$0.18
Sorcerous Spyglass $2.62$2.22$2.03$1.83$0.40$0.79
Field of Ruin $2.54$2.74$2.65$2.78-$0.20-$0.24
Jace, Cunning Castaway $2.48$2.07$2.00$1.98$0.41$0.50
Vona, Butcher of Magan $2.25$2.31$2.21$2.31-$0.06-$0.06
Thaumatic Compass $2.24$2.27$2.31$2.06-$0.03$0.18
Revel in Riches $2.23$2.07$2.19$2.04$0.16$0.19
Huatli, Warrior Poet $2.18$2.35$2.48$2.45-$0.17-$0.27
 
Commentary
Much like its successor, Ixalan has finally dipped down to box cost - and again, adequate profit margins require a multi-box discount. One of the biggest things still going for Ixalan is that it's sellable card list is quite extensive, and its hit-over-miss is amazingly low. Horrible boxes always exist, but the stability between boxes offers much less risk than other sets. If you can invest enough to get a low per-box cost, there's still profit here.

Parting Thoughts...

War is upon us. The spoiler season has begun and the affects on the market can already be felt. A few cards have already shown movement directly from the comng set, and the focus has all shifted to what the coming Standard might hold. We've hit a decline in the market over the past couple of weeks. Even the two Ixalan sets have declined. If this happened well between sets, I would worry about the future state of the market. As it is, however, I suspect it's simply a product of uncertainty with the coming set. War of the Spark definitely looks like it will shake up the metagame quite a bit, and with only part of the set spoiled and no clear picture of where we might land, the uncertainty breeds hesitation.

Those unwilling to bet where we'll land are selling off cards at a point where they know they'll make at least a little profit, rather than risk the card falling once the meta shift becomes clear. Selling now or waiting for later is a two sided gamble, with both sides offering risk and possible reward. The difference is that the early side of the coin has a known profit margin, and the risk of cards declining and taking a loss is often more concerning than them spiking.

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