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TOTAL FACTOR COST, PERFECT COMPETITION: The opportunity cost incurred by a perfectly competitive firm when using a given factor of production to produce a good or service. This is the total cost associated with the use of a particular resource or factor of production--it is the total cost of the factor. For a perfectly competitive firm, the price paid is constant and total factor cost increases at a constant rate. Total factor cost is predominately used in the analysis of the factor market. Two derivative factor cost measures are average factor cost and marginal factor cost.

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PRIVATE PROPERTY: A fundamental economic institution in which resources (property) are owned and controlled by households and businesses (the private sector) rather than government (the public sector). Private property provides critical incentives for the efficient operation of competitive market and a market-oriented economy. Under private-property ownership, control over resources is relinquished (that is sold) when the owners are compensated for their opportunity costs. And this is just the sort of thing that leads to an efficient use of resources.

     See also | institution | resources | ownership and control | household | business | private sector | government | public sector | efficiency | competitive market | market-oriented economy | opportunity cost |


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AGGREGATE EXPENDITURES

The total expenditures on gross domestic product undertaken in a given time period by the four sectors--household, business, government, and foreign. Expenditures made by each of these sectors are commonly termed consumption expenditures, investment expenditures, government purchases, and net exports. Aggregate expenditures (AE) are a cornerstone in the study of macroeconomics, playing critical roles in Keynesian economics, aggregate market analysis, and to a lesser degree, monetarism. In particular, aggregate expenditures are combined with the price level as aggregate demand.

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