Host Drew Carey and a contestant celebrating a "Buy or Sell" win.

Buy or Sell was a pricing game on the American television game show The Price Is Right. Played from March 27, 1992 through May 29, 2008, it offered three prizes, each valued between $1,000 and $4,000, along with a cash bonus of up to $1,900.

Game play[]

The contestant was shown three prizes, each with an incorrect price either above or below the actual price. One by one, the contestant had to determine whether to "buy" or "sell" a particular item. The goal was to "profit" by buying under-priced items and selling overpriced items.

After all three decisions were made, the actual prices were revealed one at a time. For a correct decision, the difference between the marked and actual prices was added to the contestant's bank. For a wrong decision, the difference was subtracted from the contestant's bank.

After all three prices had been revealed, if the contestant had a positive total in their bank (at least $1), they won all three prizes plus the bank total in cash. "Breaking even" (finishing with $0 in the bank) was considered a loss, although the prices were usually chosen to prevent this from happening.


In its first few playings, Buy or Sell's tote board was much taller than it was in its final incarnation. Additionally, the tote board was staged in several different locations over its first year of play, frequently moving from behind and next to the prizes from playing to playing until finally settling next to the host and contestant in March 1993.

The cash bonus was not added to the game until October 30, 1997. The highest cash award possible in the game, which had been won three times, was $1,900, since the differences used were always multiples of $100 and the tote board could not display a sum greater than $1,900.

On November 30, 1998 the digital readout on the board was changed from pink neon lights on a blue background to greenish-blue LCD-type digits displayed on a black background, as the original tote board was hard to read.


Buy or Sell was one of four pricing games to be retired in Season 36, Drew Carey's first season as host (alongside Poker Game, Joker, and Time Is Money), but the only one to have actually been played that season. No explanation has been offered as to why the game was removed from the rotation.