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March 2, 2024 

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ZERO-SUM GAME: A situation in which a fixed amount is divided up among the winners and losers. In a zero-sum game the wins equal the losses. Many stock market, or financial market, exchanges are zero-sum. One person buys low and sells high, while another buys high and sells low. The wealth in such transactions are merely transferred from one person to another. "Productive" market transactions, in contrast, are not zero-sum. The act of producing goods and services from resources that are consumed to satisfy wants and needs results in a net gain to society.

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RISK: The possibility of gain or loss. Risk the calculated probability of different events happening, is usually contrasted with uncertainty the possibility that any number of things could happen. For example, uncertainty is the possibility that you could win or lose $100 on the flip of a coin. You don't know which will happen, it could go either way. Risk, in contrast, is the 50 percent chance of winning $100 and the 50 percent chance of losing $100 on the flip of the coin. You know (or think you know) that your probability of winning or losing is 50 percent because the coin has a 50 percent chance of coming up either heads or tails.

     See also | uncertainty | financial market | insurance | profit | risk averse | risk loving | risk neutral | risk pooling | risk premium | entrepreneurship |


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RISK, AmosWEB GLOSS*arama, http://www.AmosWEB.com, AmosWEB LLC, 2000-2024. [Accessed: March 2, 2024].


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PERFECT COMPETITION, LOSS MINIMIZATION

A perfectly competitive firm is presumed to produce the quantity of output that minimizes economic losses, if price is greater than average variable cost but less than average total cost. This is one of three short-run production alternatives facing a firm. The other two are profit maximization (if price exceeds average total cost) and shutdown (if price is less than average variable cost).

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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time at a dollar discount store wanting to buy either a T-shirt commemorating Thor Heyerdahl's Pacific crossing aboard the Kon-Tiki or a wall poster commemorating the 2000 Olympics. Be on the lookout for deranged pelicans.
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Helping spur the U.S. industrial revolution, Thomas Edison patented nearly 1300 inventions, 300 of which came out of his Menlo Park "invention factory" during a four-year period.
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