Edit: Oops this entry is being posted a little late - I somehow managed to leave it in drafts for a couple of days. It will probably appear out of sequence.
As an aspiring champion Throg is at his happiest cleaving heads off shoulders and generally causing mayhem. The more refined arts of crafting and commerce are not exactly his thing. It wasn't too much of a surprise then when he called into a smith to repair the dents and scrapes in his armour to find that he had barely enough coins to cover the 20 silver bill. Luckily his bags were full of junk that he had picked up off the battle field and vendors seemed happy enough to pay him for assorted toes and bones. I have no idea who actually uses this stuff. Perhaps they end up on a string around some gentle townfolks neck as a kind of good luck charm, who knows. Throg may be tough but he is not completely dumb and he realises that he needs a more stable source of income to finance his adventures so he devoted some time to skilling up his foresting and prospecting abilities. Throg choose the explorer vocation because he figured he could combine this easily enough with adventuring - gathering the materials as he find them in his travels. He also reckoned it would be impossible to lose money picking stuff up for free and selling it. In this he is correct but he overlooked the fact that skilling up a profession costs time and money and without the requisite level of skill he won't be abe to extract higher quality resources. Happily he managed to get to apprentice propector by converting the copper ore he had mined into copper ingots with no additional money involved. Unfortunately he couldn't make head nor tail of the new fangled superior forges in Thorin's Gate and had to trek all the way to Gondamon to find a simpler forge he could use. This is a particular nuiscance because there is no bank vault in Gondamon and he had to carry all the materials there himself. At least he could use the workbenches in Thorin's gate to boil the light leather hides he had found. Again boiling leather costs nothing so it offers a way to skill up cheaply.
In his travels Throg came across some recipes and ingredients that were of no use to him. Against my better judgement he decided to try his luck selling them on the auction house. I am all for selling at a profit but auction houses have only recently come to Eriador. There seems to be far more sellers than buyers at the moment with the consequence that prices are extremely low. I worry that Throg will lose more in deposits and commission than he gains on sales. Perhaps later when the public have got used to the idea prices will rise. At least I managed to convince Throg to check what items buyers were actually bidding for before adding his wares to the list. There is no point adding yet another lot of copper ingots when there are already 20 for sale and no bidders for any of them. I have some experience of buying and selling on auction houses in other lands and I counselled Throg to always set a carefully chosen buyout price based on what buyers are bidding for similar goods. Hopefully he heeds at least some of my advice and avoids losing his shirt.
After all of fevered bout of economic activity Throg has the grand total of 70 silver in his purse. This is not a fortune but it is enough to finance the continuing adventures of a level 11 champion. I have heard that famers have recently been enjoying bumper yields and earning profits as high as 100 silver per hour. Rumour has it that a terrible blight is sweeping in from the western lands however. By all accounts this blight has devastated farm yields and renders it nigh impossible for farmers to turn a profit.