oh lets see what will happens
Valve is having major legal troubles on many sides, lootboxes, gambling, match fixing on cs go tournaments and people using their virtual system to money laundering.
This is just a way to tell governments they are doing something, the same way when they applied the 7 days cooldown on trades. They know this isn't really stopping anybody from doing so (and they don't even want to stop it since they are making billions out of this), but it's something they can show off to legals "Hey you see we made keys untradable, we are good now"
There are so many instances of TF2 items having no business being this high value. Yet they are, for simple reasons because they have a different color, or maybe because they have a different text, or a unique attribute, even if useless. People are willing to spend money impulsively, partly because (other than being wealthy, low age, parents credit card or being financially irresponsible) quite a lot of money on steam are not labor money made via a job, they are money made by tradings as a hobby. You would be surprised on how detachable they are with money from trading compared to money made out of real life labor. Of course many of the rare items are rare and expensive because they manifested as bugs out of Valve's mistake. But then again is it less outrageous to think people are willing to spend 700$ for a simple bugged and useless item, compared to a few tens of $ for a key that will only be a few in numbers in the future. I don't expect them to become hundreds of dollars, 30 or even 20 is enough.
Good talk. There are several ways how rare items are perfect for exploitation. As a trader you can just live off the difference between buy and sell, buy up the entire market and set the price at an arbitrary high point, with both buy and sell orders.
These super rare markets offer the perfect opportunity for scams. It's like having a monopoly, 1 buyer/seller can dictate the price and push everybody else around. Except that real world production monopolies still have to lower prices to create maximum revenue, whereas a market bully maximizes margin.
The scam works even better in person if the con offers to buy someone else's valuable item "What knife is this, it looks amazing!" for a bigger price than market. The mark is intrigued, but cautious. But once the mark prepares to trade, the con offers some amount of cash equivalent, but then says "OH. I don't have that much currency, let me trade you this very rare and very valuable piece of scrap. You can verify the price on the marketplace yourself!" The funny thing is that marks simply can't walk away from this supposedly amazing deal. Only to then find out that there are no buyers for that scrap after all, except maybe some low-balls. (Other game markets even allow to fake high buy offers, by saying I'll buy your scrap for a thousand, but only if you sell 500 pieces at once.) In Steam you can fake false prices, by taking a 15% hit, transferring things from 1 account to the other.
Valve either fucked up creating a million, fractured granular markets. Or they by some twisted conceit of economics consider these scams, which dominate the entirety of their Marketplace clusterf*ck as part of 'free' market capitalism.
Even then there may be people who buy things outright, believing the "market" and believing in past transactions, thus making it more real. Rarity creates high prices by way of fraud, rather than demand, it can do so even when there is no demand at all.
It was about time
That's sick! Too bad I sold all of mine recently xD