Economic Basics - Terms And Concepts Research Paper

Length: 5 pages Sources: 5 Subject: Economics Type: Research Paper Paper: #14856368 Related Topics: Unruly Women, Profit Maximization, Microeconomics, Theater
Excerpt from Research Paper :

¶ … Firm, Labor Markets, and Imperfect Information


Perfect Competition and Monopolistic Competition

A perfectly competitive market does not have barriers to entry or exit and is characterized by many producers and many consumers, all of whom are price takers -- a term that means the suppliers and the buyers cannot effect the price as they do not have market power ("Competitive Markets," 2014). Monopolistic competitive markets are do have some barriers to entry and exit. Consumers can find substitutes for all of the goods in a competitive market, whereas high product differentiation is seen in a monopolistic competitive market ("Competitive Markets," 2014). Indeed, one of the reasons that a firm can achieve a monopoly for a product is that the business has been successful in its efforts to differentiate a product, as perceived by its customers. The ability of a business to make profits in the long-run is referred to as the elasticity of demand. Perfectly competitive and monopolistic competitive markets both demonstrate elasticity of demand in the long-run ("Competitive Markets," 2014). That is to say that consumers in both markets are sensitive to price, so that the demand for products decrease if the prices rise ("Competitive Markets," 2014).

A small difference in elasticity between the two types of competition does exist. Consider that in a perfectly competitive, the demand curves are perfectly elastic: an incremental price increase causes the demand for a product to cease ("Competitive Markets," 2014). In contrast, demand curves are not perfectly elastic in monopolistic competition. Businesses have market power in monopolistic competition, which means that these firms can raise their prices and not see all of their customers vanish ("Competitive Markets," 2014). A perfectly competitive market is perfectly efficient. What this means is that the profit of any firm in a competitive market cannot increase without reducing the profit of another ("Competitive Markets," 2014). This is because consumers can select substitute products without loosing any advantage or without having to pay more for the substitute good. Suppliers cannot determine the price of a product or service because the market dictates the price in a competitive market.

Cost, Profit, and Production

When prices fall, consumers will generally buy more of a good or service; this is reflected in a downward sloping demand curve ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). Alternately, an upward sloping supply curve represents the willingness of producers to sell less goods or services when prices fall ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). Market equilibrium is the represented by the intersection of these two curves -- and it is considered to be the optimal outcome for all actors in the market ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). In a monopolistic market, output is lower than it is in a competitive market, and the prices in the monopolistic market are also higher ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). This creates what is known as deadweight loss or a welfare loss for society ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). This is a primary reason why monopolies generally do not create the best situations for societies.

Businesses try to maximize revenue while simultaneously minimizing costs. This requires a business to keep an eye on changes in both revenue and costs, which is referred to as "looking at the margin" ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). That is to say that the businesses scrutinize marginal revenue -- changes in revenue -- and marginal costs -- changes in costs, for every unit produced ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). The relationship that is pivotal to profit maximization is this: If the increase in revenue is larger than the increase in costs, then producing more of the goods or services will still raise the price ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). This relationship will continue until the marginal revenue (MR) equals the marginal cost (MC) ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). Another way of showing profit maximizing is: MR=MC ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). All other things remaining the same, it will be easier to create profit in the short-term rather than over the long-term. Indeed, economic theory suggests that firms cannot be profitable over the long-term. However, what is referred to as profitability is not accounting profitability, but this is just the difference between total costs and total revenue -- or explicit costs that generate an increase in debt or an outflow of money ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). On the other hand, economic profit is total revenue minus total costs, which means that it includes implicit costs ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). So in addition to opportunity costs, economic profit also must account for the effort, money, and time that an owner invests in a business ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). In the long-run, then, owners will need to be compensated for their opportunity costs. Over the long-run, in order to have an economic profit, a business will need to demonstrate positive accounting profit with regard to the amount of the opportunity cost the business has accrued ("Zero Profit Equilibrium," 2014). The normal profit must...


The factors that contribute to transaction costs include the commissions charged by brokers and the spreads -- which are the differences between the price the buyer pays for a security and the price that the dealer paid for the security. Even real estate, which is considered an investment or an asset, entails transaction costs for closing costs and the real estate agent's commission. Investors pay a considerable amount of attention to transaction costs since they are a primary element of net returns on investments. Over time, the transaction costs diminish returns because the amount of capital that can be invested in reduced and the transaction costs themselves can reach thousands of dollars. For these reasons, it behooves an investor to try to keep transaction costs down. Moreover, the standard transaction costs and fees for different asset classes fall into different ranges.

In an imperfect market, information is not shared quickly with all the constituents and buyers and sellers are not immediately matched ("Investopedia," 2015). The concept of a perfect market is not are reality but is instead a model that provides a standard for the status of the current market. Imperfect markets are everywhere, even in the United States, which is considered the most sophisticated financial market in the world. ("Investopedia," 2015). Market inefficiencies prevail, information is improperly disseminated, and price corruption is commonplace ("Investopedia," 2015).

Behavioral economics theory argues that even when people have perfect information, they do not always make rational decisions (Blanding, 2014). Traditional economic theory is based on the idea that people who are actors in the markets make rational decisions based on complete information, and that everyone has the same information at fundamentally the same time (Blanding, 2014). The field of behavioral economics combines the disciplines of psychology and economics, emphasizing research about whether the economic constructs of utility and profit maximization are actually reflect the behavior of individuals and institutions (Blanding, 2014).

Pricing Strategy

The typical pricing strategy used by movie theaters shows different admission charges for people of different ages and with particular status, such as senior citizens or high school and college students. In addition, lower admission charges are associated with matinee or afternoons showings of films. This pricing strategy is not based on whimsy or altruism, but instead reflects the primary target audience of movie theaters. Most of the people who attend movie theaters today are young males -- Gen Xers or Millenniums -- since this is the group with the freedom and discretionary dollars to make movie-going an easy and frequent decision. Sporadic and limited releases of "chick flicks" or romantic movies also attract audiences in this young age group, generally, along with women of all ages. Hollywood grinds out films for this most lucrative audience.

Consider that many elderly film buffs do not like to drive at night, so they tend to view films in the afternoons. Also note that elderly people may have compromised hearing or more stringent behavioral standards than people in other demographics; this may cause them to avoid the date night younger crowd who may be raucous and noisy. Elderly people may find that, even though children take a while to settle down at the theater, they are mostly accompanied by adults who will press for quiet, attentive behavior from their youngsters, in part to feel like they are getting the money's worth and in order to not be embarrassed by unruly children. Additionally, fewer elderly people go to movie theaters compared to the teen and young adult market. Given these factors, reduced admission fees for senior citizens makes sense -- and does not overly impact the profitability of the theater business.

Fewer films are made for audiences of children and families to attend together; when family films are released, they very often take place during school holidays, which encourages attendance. Ticket sales for new releases of films for kids and families generally reach high levels…

Sources Used in Documents:


Blanding, M. (2014, August 11). The business of behavioral economics. HBS Working Knowledge. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Business Review. Retreived from

Cardon, J.H., and Hendel, I. (2001). Asymmetric information in health insurance: evidence from the National Medical Expenditure Survey. Rand Journal of Economics, 32 (3), 408 -- 427. JSTOR 2696362. Retreived from

Chiappori, P.A., and Salanie, B. (2000). Testing for asymmetric information in insurance markets. Journal of Political Economy, 108(1), 56 -- 78. doi:10.1086/262111. Retrieved from

Polborn, M.K., Hoy, M., and Sadanand, A. (2006). Advantageous effects of regulatory adverse selection in the life insurance market. Economic Journal, 116(508): 327 -- 354. doi:10.1111/j.1468-0297.2006.01059.x. Retreived from;jsessionid=6D024FB0D715D4C0F4BAAB184E6AF8E2.f02t03
____. (2014, November 17). Microeconomics -- competitive markets. EB - Principles of Economics and Business: Explanations, Reviews, and Contextualization. Retreived from
____. (2014, November 17). Microeconomics -- zero profit equilibrium. EB - Principles of Economics and Business: Explanations, Reviews, and Contextualization. Retreived from
____. (2015). Imperfect market. Investopedia. Retrieved from
____. (2015). Transaction costs. Investopedia. Retrieved from

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