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VARIABLE COST: In general, cost that changes with changes in the quantity of output produced. More specifically, variable cost is combined with the adjectives "total" and "average" to indicate the overall level of variable cost or the per unit variable cost. Variable cost depends on the amount of produced. If there is no production, then there is no variable cost.

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DIAMOND-WATER PARADOX: The perplexing observation that water, which is more useful than diamonds, has a lower price. If price is related to utility, how can this occur? This paradox was first proposed by classical economists in the 19th century and was subsequently used as a stepping stone for developing the notion of marginal utility and the role it plays in the demand price of a good. The paradox is magically cleared up with an understanding of marginal utility and total utility. People are willing to pay a higher price for goods with greater marginal utility. As such, water which is plentiful has enormous total utility, but a low price because of a low marginal utility. Diamonds, however, have less total utility because they are less plentiful, but a high price because of a high marginal utility.

     See also | price | demand price | utility | marginal utility | total utility | consumer surplus | law of diminishing marginal utility | marginal utility-price ratio | marginal utility and demand |


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DIAMOND-WATER PARADOX, AmosWEB GLOSS*arama, http://www.AmosWEB.com, AmosWEB LLC, 2000-2018. [Accessed: January 22, 2018].


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RATIONING

The distribution or allocation of a limited commodity, usually accomplished based on a standard or criterion. The two primary methods of rationing are markets and governments. Rationing is needed due to the scarcity problem. Because wants and needs are unlimited, but resources are limited, available commodities must be rationed out to competing uses.

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During the American Revolution, the price of corn rose 10,000 percent, the price of wheat 14,000 percent, the price of flour 15,000 percent, and the price of beef 33,000 percent.
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