In regards to "Manipulation Monday #3: Thanks to Kyla!"
If you read my Item vs BDA thread i begin to write about how it will be more fruitful to almost never sell on the RHAM and only buy from it when opportunity arises. I went into a detailed analytical forecast on what the blizzard posting fee's will be and also showed the "2.9%+$0.30" paypal charges for receiving payments.
Applying my analysis to his/her idea he will lose a substantial percentage to just the fee's associated with turning his gold into cash. the only reason to do this in the beginning of the game is if you think that the $ will appreciate substantially within a short period of time. However turning 5000g into $1.50 = 1000g = $0.30 then take the estimated 2.9%+$0.35(.30 from PP and .05 from blizz) your looking at a charge of $.05+$.35= $0.40 on your 1.50 which is a 26% loss in the conversion. however if you sell 50,000g for $10.50 you are looking at a $.30+$.35= $.65 which is a 6% loss on conversion which would require you to be able to purchase at least an extra 3,000g with the initial $10.50 totaling 53,000g just to break even.
At 500,000g for $105 your looking at a charge of $3+.35=$3.35 which is 3.19% loss on conversion. and In turn would require a 3% appreciation of the $ against gold for you to make money.
So in short, Volume will be a huge factor when converting GLD to USD.
However as i said in my other thread using funds to purchase end game crafting mats will be the best way to preserve the initial value of your gold for the long term.(provided no new end game mats are added)
THAT BEING SAID, HERE IS MY ENTRY FOR MADOFF/MANIPULATION MONDAY
It requires at least two people. First you identify an item that is "rare" and has a decent demand relative to volume in the AH. You then purchase several of these items to create an inventory. This is one of the most impotant steps, the item that you chose to do this with must be perceived as a good important item to have that does not have a similar item in the same price range, this should most likely be done with a Staple item, as i spoke about in Identifying Profit
Now lets say the item is selling for 5000g, i want to create the perception in the AH that this item is worth 10000g. I will then post 1 of these items at 10,001g and my partner post and undercut me buy 1g. we will go back and forth, I will purchase his item and he will purchase mine we will rinse and repeat until the market perception begins to change. People are greedy and when they happen to come across the item we are doing this with they will see it is "selling for 10,000g" and will price their item for probably 9,000-9,500.
When this happens we have just raised the "perceptual value" of the item.
Now doing this back and forth we may have spent 2000g on AH fees between the both of us. However we purchased 10 of these items each at 5000g now we begin to sell them in a range from 8000g-9500g that is a profit of 37-47% minus a small percentage on additional AH fees. So in total that's an initial investment of 50,000g eventually turning into 68,000g - 73,000g minus the 2000g to manipulate that's leaves you with 66,000 - 71,000g after putting in only 50,000g.
Now obviously in practice it can work out very differently, if you chose an item that isn't rare enough then the supply will be constant and you wont be able to change perceived value.