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HERFINDAHL-HIRSHMAN INDEX: A measure of concentration of the production in an industry that's calculated as the sum of the squares of market shares for each firm. This is an alternative method of summarizing the degree to which an industry is oligopolistic and the relative concentration of market power held by the largest firms in the industry. The Herfindahl index gives a better indication of the relative market control of the largest firms than can be found with the four-firm and eight-firm concentration ratios.

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PRODUCTION STAGES: The three stages of production are characterized by the slopes, shapes, and interrelationships of the total, marginal, and average product curves. The first stage is characterized by a positive slope of the average product curve, ending at the intersection between the average product and marginal product curves; the second stage continues up to the point in which the marginal product becomes negative, at the peak of the total product curve; and the third stage exists over the range of in which the total product curve is negatively sloped. In Stage I, average product is positive and increasing. In Stage II, marginal product is positive, but decreasing. And in Stage III, total product is decreasing.

     See also | marginal returns | increasing marginal returns | decreasing marginal returns | law of diminishing marginal returns | production inputs | production function | production time periods | total product | marginal product | average product |


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ASSUMPTIONS, KEYNESIAN ECONOMICS

The macroeconomic study of Keynesian economics relies on three key assumptions--rigid prices, effective demand, and savings-investment determinants. First, rigid or inflexible prices prevent some markets from achieving equilibrium in the short run. Second, effective demand means that consumption expenditures are based on actual income, not full employment or equilibrium income. Lastly, important savings and investment determinants include income, expectations, and other influences beyond the interest rate. These three assumptions imply that the economy can achieve a short-run equilibrium at less than full-employment production.

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