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PERFECT COMPETITION AND DEMAND: The demand curve for the output produced by a perfectly competitive firm is perfectly elastic at the going market price. The firm can sell all of the output that it wants at this price because it is a relatively small part of the market. As a price taker, the firm has no ability to charge a higher price and no reason to charge a lower one. The market price facing a perfectly competitive firm is also the firm's average revenue and, most importantly, its marginal revenue.

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SATISFACTION: The process of successfully fulfilling wants and needs. A basic fact of life is that people want and need stuff to stay alive and to make that life more enjoyable. Satisfaction is the economic term that captures this wants-and-needs-fulfilling process. Satisfying wants and needs is actually the ultimate goal of economic activity, the end result of addressing the fundamental problem of scarcity, and, when you get right down to it, life itself.

     See also | wants | needs | scarcity | economics | unlimited wants and needs | limited resources | resources | value | utility |


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SOCIAL SCIENCE

The scientific study of society--of human behavior and of social interactions. Economics is one of several social sciences. Others are sociology, political science, and anthropology. Economics is considered a social science because it seeks to explain how society deals with the scarcity problem.

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