Once upon a time, I bought a lot of packs of baseball cards… sometimes boxes of them. As pack prices rose and the number of cards inside declined, and as my own collecting interests grew more specialized, I found that it made more sense to buy the individual cards that I wanted.
The reason I’m able to do that is because people will buy full cases of baseball cards, open the packs and sell them as singles, team sets, full sets and master sets that include all of the insert and short print cards.
The Cardboard Connection takes a look at some of the issues that affect the profitability of case-breaking, using the recently-released 2012 Topps Update Series as an example:
Overall, 2012 Topps Update Series Baseball was a solid release. However, for some case breakers, it did not turn out well. Most reported returns as high as $125 per case in profit. Some ended up losing as much as $125 per case. Of the breakers I spoke with that opened at least six cases, they averaged slightly better than break even.