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23/06/2017

Ferengi Acquisition Rules


History of the Rules

The Acquisition Rules were written by Gint, the first Grand Nagus of the Ferengi people. According to a dream Quark had (which may or may not have been accurate), calling them “rules” was a marketing ploy, as nobody would buy a book entitled The Suggestions of Acquisition. Also in this dream, Gint made reference to Rule #239, implying that at least that many had been written by Gint. (DS9 episode: “Body Parts“)

According to some sources the rules were written out of order, and Gint only wrote Rule #162 (DS9 references: The Ferengi Acquisition Rules, Legends of the Ferengi)

In 2151, Krem stated that there were 173 Acquisition Rules. This implies that the rules were not all created at once, and have been added to over the centuries. (ENT episode: “Acquisition“)

By 2370, at the latest, all 285 rules had been written. (DS9 episode: “Acquisition Rules“)

In 2371, Grand Nagus Zek re-wrote the Acquisition Rules, giving them a more altruistic spin, after an experience with a Bajoran orb. The new rules were entitled The Acquisition Rules, Revised for the Modern Ferengi. However, these revised rules were never published, and were only revealed to Quark and Rom on Deep Space 9. (DS9 episode: “Prophet Motive“)

As part of the reform of Ferengi society instituted by Zek, the Acquisition Rules were no longer taught to children. (DS9 episode: “The Dogs of War“)

The Known Ferengi Acquisition Rules (note: there are many duplicates in this list; needs work.)

Number Rule Source
1 Once you have their money, you never give it back. The Nagus” (DS9 episode)
2 The best deal is the one that makes the most profit. The 34th Rule (DS9 novel)
3 Never spend more for an acquisition than you have to. The Maquis, Part II” (DS9 episode)
4 A woman wearing clothes is like a man in the kitchen. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
5 Always exaggerate your estimates. Cold Fusion (SCE novel)
6 Never allow family to stand in the way of opportunity. The Nagus” (DS9 episode)
7 Always keep your ears open. In the Hands of the Prophets” (DS9 episode)
8 Small print leads to large risk. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
9 Opportunity, plus instinct, equals profit.” The Storyteller” (DS9 episode)
10 Greed is eternal. Prophet Motive” (DS9 episode)
11 Even if it’s free, you can always buy it cheaper. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
12 Anything worth selling is worth selling twice. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
13 Anything worth doing is worth doing for money. Legends of the Ferengi (DS9 novel)
15 Dead men close no deals. Demons of Air and Darkness (DS9 novel)
16 A deal is a deal (is a deal)…until a better one comes along. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
17 A contract is a contract is a contract… but only between Ferengi. Body Parts” (DS9 episode)
18 A Ferengi without profit is no Ferengi at all. Heart of Stone” (DS9 episode)
19 Satisfaction is not guaranteed. Legends of the Ferengi (DS9 novel)
20 He who dives under the table today lives to profit tomorrow. Ferenginar: Satisfaction is Not Guaranteed (DS9 novella)
21 Never place friendship before profit. Acquisition Rules” (DS9 episode)
22 Wise men can hear profit in the wind. Acquisition Rules” (DS9 episode)
23 Nothing is more important than your health…except for your money. Acquisition” (ENT episode)
27 There’s nothing more dangerous than an honest businessman. Legends of the Ferengi (DS9 novel)
29 What’s in it for me? Highest Score (DS9 novel)
30 “Confidentiality equals profit. The Badlands, Part IV (DS9 novel)
31 Never make fun of a Ferengi’s mother. The Siege” (DS9 episode)
32 Insult something he cares about. Elite Force II
33 It never hurts to suck up to the boss. Acquisition Rules” (DS9 episode)
34 War is good for business. Destiny” (DS9 episode); The 34th Rule (DS9 novel)
35 Peace is good for business. Destiny” (DS9 episode); The 34th Rule (DS9 novel)
37 The early investor reaps the most interest. ST novella: Reservoir Ferengi
39 Don’t tell customers more than they need to know. Ascendance (DS9 novel)
40 She can touch your lobes but never your latinum. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
41 Profit is its own reward. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
43 Feed your greed, but not enough to choke it. The Buried Age (TNG novel)
44 Never confuse wisdom with luck. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
45 Expand or die.* Acquisition” (ENT episode)
47 Never trust a man wearing a better suit than your own. Rivals” (DS9 episode)
48 The bigger the smile, the sharper the knife. Acquisition Rules” (DS9 episode)
52 Never ask when you can take. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
53 Never trust anybody taller than you. Mission Gamma: Twilight (DS9 novel)
54 Rate divided by time equals profit.” (Also known as “The Velocity of Wealth.”) Raise the Dawn (Typhon Pact novel)
55 Take joy from profit, and profit from joy. Worlds of Deep Space Nine: Bajor: Fragments and Omens (DS9 novel)
57 Good customers are as rare as latinum. Treasure them. Armageddon Game” (DS9 episode)
58 There is no substitute for success. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
59 Free advice is seldom cheap. Acquisition Rules” (DS9 episode)
60 Keep your lies consistent. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
62 The riskier the road, the greater the profit. Acquisition Rules” (DS9 episode)
63 Work is the best therapy-at least for your employees. Over a Torrent Sea” (TTN novel)
65 Win or lose, there’s always Hupyrian beetle snuff. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
66 “Someone’s always got bigger ears.” Star Trek: The Last Generation #3 (TNG comic book)
69 Ferengi are not responsible for the stupidity of other races. Balance of Power (TNG novel)
74 Knowledge equals profit. Inside Man” (VOY episode)
75 Home is where the heart is, but the stars are made of latinum. Civil Defense” (DS9 episode)
76 Every once in a while, declare peace. It confuses the Hell out of your enemies. The Homecoming” (DS9 episode)
77 If you break it, I’ll charge you for it! Star Trek Online
79 Beware of the Vulcan greed for knowledge. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
82 The flimsier the product, the higher the price. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
85 Never let the competition know what you’re thinking. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
87 Learn the customer’s weaknesses, so that you can better take advantage of him. Highest Score (DS9 novel)
88 It ain’t over ’til its over. Ferenginar: Satisfaction is Not Guaranteed (DS9 novella)
89 Ask not what you can do for your profits, but what your profits can do for you. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
92 There are many paths to profit. Highest Score (DS9 novel)
94 Females and finances don’t mix. Ferengi Love Songs” (DS9 episode)
95 Expand or die.* False Profits” (VOY episode)
97 Enough is never enough. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
98 Every man has his price. In the Pale Moonlight” (DS9 episode)
99 Trust is the biggest liability of all. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
100 When it’s good for business, tell the truth. Ascendance (DS9 novel)
102 Nature decays, but latinum lasts forever. The Jem’Hadar” (DS9 episode)
103 Sleep can interfere with… Acquisition Rules” (DS9 episode)
104 Faith moves mountains…of inventory. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
106 There is no honor in poverty. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
109 Dignity and an empty sack is worth the sack. Rivals” (DS9 episode)
110 Exploitation begins at home. Star Trek Online
111 Treat people in your debt like family… exploit them. Past Tense, Part I” (DS9 episode)
112 Never have sex with the boss’ sister. Playing God” (DS9 episode)
113 Always have sex with the boss. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
121 Everything is for sale – even friendship. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
123 Even a blind man can recognize the glow of Latinum. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
125 You can’t make a deal if you’re dead. The Siege of AR-558” (DS9 episode)
135 Listen to secrets, but never repeat them. Ascendance (DS9 novel)
139 Wives serve; brothers inherit. Necessary Evil” (DS9 episode)
141 Only fools pay retail. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
144 There’s nothing wrong with charity… as long as it winds up in your pocket. Legends of the Ferengi (DS9 novel)
147 People love the bartender. Fearful Symmetry (DS9 novel)
153 Sell the sizzle, not the steak. Deep Space Mine” (DS9 comic)
162 Even in the worst of times, someone turns a profit. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel, DS9 video game: Harbinger
168 Whisper your way to success. Treachery, Faith, and the Great River” (DS9 episode)
177 Know your enemies… but do business with them always. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
181 Not even dishonesty can tarnish the shine of profit. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
183 When life hands you ungaberries, make detergent. Hollow Men (DS9 novel)
184 A Ferengi waits to bid until his opponents have exhausted themselves. Balance of Power (TNG novel)
188 Not even dishonesty can tarnish the shine of profit. Star Trek Online
189 Let others keep their reputation. You keep their money. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
190 Hear all, trust nothing. DS9 episode: “Call to Arms
192 Never cheat a Klingon… unless you’re sure you can get away with it. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 novel)
193 Trouble comes in threes. Star Trek Online
194 It’s always good business to know about new customers before they walk in your door. Whispers” (DS9 episode)
199 Location, location, location. The Soul Key (DS9 novel)
200 A Ferengi chooses no side but his own (DS9 novel: Ferenginar: Satisfaction is Not Guaranteed)
202 The justification for profit is profit. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 reference book)
203 New customers are like razor-toothed gree worms. They can be succulent, but sometimes they bite back. DS9 episode: “Little Green Men
208 Sometimes, the only thing more dangerous than a question is an answer. DS9 episode: “Ferengi Love Songs
211 Employees are the rungs on the ladder of success, don’t hesitate to step on them. DS9 episode: “Bar Association
212 A good lie is easier to believe than the truth. Star Trek Online
214 Never begin a business transaction on an empty stomach. DS9 episode: “The Maquis, Part I
216 Never gamble with a telepath. DS9 novel: The Laertian Gamble
217 You can’t free a fish from water. DS9 episode: “Past Tense, Part I
218 Always know what you’re buying. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 reference book)
218 Sometimes what you get free cost entirely too much. Baby on Board (DS9 Malibu Comics)
219 Possession is eleven-tenths of the law! TNG novel: Balance of Power
223 Beware the man who doesn’t take time for Oo-mox. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 reference book)
227 If that’s what’s written, then that’s what’s written. Star Trek Online
229 Latinum lasts longer than lust. DS9 episode: “Ferengi Love Songs
235 Duck; death is tall. Mission Gamma: Twilight (DS9 novel)
236 You can’t buy fate. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 reference book)
239 Never be afraid to mislabel a product. DS9 episode: “Body Parts
240 Time, like latinum, is a highly limited commodity. Star Trek Online
242 More is good…all is better. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 reference book)
243 Always leave yourself an out. Sacraments of Fire (DS9 novel)
255 A wife is [a] luxury… a smart accountant a neccessity. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 reference book)
257 When the messenger comes to appropriate your profits, kill the messenger. False Profits (VOY episode)
261 A wealthy man can afford everything except a conscience. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 reference book)
263 Never let doubt interfere with your lust for Latinum. DS9 episode: “Bar Association
266 When in doubt, lie. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 reference book)
272 Always inspect the merchandise before making a deal. Star Trek Online
280 If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. DS9 novel: Ferenginar: Satisfaction is Not Guaranteed)
284 Deep down, everyone’s a Ferengi. The Ferengi Acquisition Rules (DS9 reference book)
285 No good deed ever goes unpunished. DS9 episode: “The Collaborator
not given Always get somebody else to do the lifting. N-Vector” (DS9 comic)
not given Never get into anything that you can’t get out of. N-Vector” (DS9 comic)
not given A man is only worth the sum of his possessions. Acquisition” (ENT episode)
not given An angry man is an enemy, and a satisfied man is an ally.. Antimatter (DS9 novel)
not given The less employees know about the cash flow, the smaller the share they can demand. Betrayal (DS9 novel)
not given Only a fool passes up a business opportunity. Elite Force II
not given The more time they take deciding, the more money they will spend. Stowaways (DS9 novel)

Rule of acquisition number 108: a woman wearing clothes is like a man without any profits.

Questionable RulesEdit

  • In 2151, Krem quoted the 6th rule slightly differently, and calls the 95th rule the 45th. He also says there are only 173 Acquisition Rules(although the rules are always being expanded). The discrepancies may all be the result of later changes to the rules, or he may simply be incorrect (he says himself he does not have the “lobes” for business). (ENT episode: “Acquisition“)
  • TNG novel Balance of Power gives FRoA#60 as “Let’s you and him fight”, as well as coming up with a rule it says is #303…”The sheep want to be fleeced!”.
  • DS9 Young Adult novel Highest Score simplifies FRoA#16 to just “A deal is a deal”.
  • In DS9 episode The House of Quark, Quark recites “Rule of Acquisition 286, when Morn leaves, it’s all over.” When Rom asserts there is no such rule, Quark states that there should be.
  • In the Voyager episode False Profits, Neelix, disguised as the Grand Proxy, recites “Rule of Acquisition 299; After you’ve exploited someone, it never hurts to thank them. That way, it’s easier to exploit them next time.” The rules, naturally, did not exceed 285 at that time. While consulting the Acquisition Rules, Arridor came across the statement “When no appropriate rule applies, make one up.”

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