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OPEC: The common abbreviation for the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, which is an international organization of more than a dozen nations located primarily in the Middle East, Africa, and Central America that controls a sizeable portion of the world's petroleum reserves. This control over oil reserves gives OPEC significant market control, which it has been inclined to exert from time to time. The most noted time was the 1970s. OPEC raised oil prices from a scant $2 to $3 a barrel in the early 1970s to over $30 a barrel by the end of the decade. As an group of independent oil-producing nations seeking to monopolize the market, OPEC represents a textbook example of an cartel.

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COMPETITIVE MARKET: A market with a large number of buyers and a large number of sellers, such that no single buyer or seller is able to influence the price or any other aspect of the market -- no one has any market control. A competitive market achieves efficiency in the use of our scarce resources if there are no market failures present.

     See also | market | competition | price | quantity | equilibrium | efficiency | market control | regulation | demand price | supply price | satisfaction | opportunity cost | Pareto efficiency |


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MARKET ADJUSTMENT

The economic analysis of changes in market equilibrium caused by changes in any of the five demand determinants and/or the five supply determinants. Market adjustment comes in one of eight varieties, given that the two curves comprising the market (demand curve and supply curve) can either increase or decrease, individually or simultaneously. Four adjustments involve a shift of EITHER the demand curve OR the supply curve. The other four adjustments involve shifts of BOTH the demand curve AND the supply curve.

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