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January 18, 2018 

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DECREASING MARGINAL RETURNS: In the short-run production of a firm, an increase in the variable input results in a decrease in the marginal product of the variable input. Decreasing marginal returns typically surface after the first few quantities of a variable input are added to a fixed input. Compare this with increasing marginal returns. You should also compare this with diseconomies of scale associated with long-run production.

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Lesson 1: Economic Basics | Unit 2: Doing Economics Page: 4 of 18

Topic: Science and Policy <=PAGE BACK | PAGE NEXT=>

The study of economics involves both scientific investigation and policy analysis.

Economists practice both:

  • Positive economics, which uses the scientific method to uncover the basic mechanism of the economy. It seeks to describe the way this world is ARE.
  • Normative economics, which is the policy side of economics. It seeks to prescribe the way the world SHOULD BE.

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PERFECT COMPETITION, LONG-RUN ADJUSTMENT

A perfectly competitive industry undertakes a two-part adjustment to equilibrium in the long run. One is the adjustment of each perfectly competitive firm to the appropriate factory size that maximizes long-run profit. The other is the entry of firms into the industry or exit of firms out of the industry, to eliminate economic profit or economic loss. The end result of this long-run adjustment is a multi-faceted equilibrium condition that price is equal to marginal cost and average cost (both short run and long run).

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The first paper notes printed in the United States were in denominations of 1 cent, 5 cents, 25 cents, and 50 cents.
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