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August 14, 2018 

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OLIGOPOLY AND MONOPOLISTIC COMPETITION: Oligopoly and monopolistic competition have some similarities, but also have a few important differences. Both are examples of imperfect competition on the market structure continuum between ideals of perfect competition and monopoly. However, oligopoly contains a small number of large firms and monopolistic competition contains a large number of small firms. The dividing line between oligopoly and monopolistic competition can be blurred due to the number of firms in the industry.

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TOTAL REVENUE CURVE, MONOPOLY:

A curve that graphically represents the relation between the total revenue received by a monopoly firm for selling its output and the quantity of output sold. It is combined with a monopoly firm's total cost curve to determine economic profit and the profit maximizing level of production. The slope of the total revenue curve is marginal revenue.
Monopoly is a market structure with a single firm selling a unique good. As the only firm in the market, monopoly is a price maker and has extensive market control, facing a negatively-sloped demand curve. If a monopoly wants to sell a larger quantity, then it must lower the price.

The total revenue curve reflects the degree of market control held by a firm. For a perfectly competitive firm with no market control, the total revenue curve is a straight line. For firms with more market control, especially monopoly, the total revenue curve is "hump shaped," increasing, reaching a peak, then declining. The slope of this total revenue curve is marginal revenue.

Total Revenue Curve,
Medicine Style
Total Revenue Curve, Monopoly
The total revenue curve for Feet-First Pharmaceutical is displayed in the exhibit to the right. Key to this curve is that Feet-First Pharmaceutical is a monopoly provider of a drug called Amblathan-Plus and thus faces a negatively-sloped demand curve. Larger quantities of output are only possible with lower prices.

The vertical axis measures total revenue and the horizontal axis measures the quantity of output (ounces of medicine). Although quantity on this particular graph stops at 12 ounces of medicine, it could go higher.

This curve indicates that if Feet-First Pharmaceutical sells 1 ounce of medicine (at $10 per ounce), then it receives $10 of total revenue. Alternatively, if it sells 10 ounces (at $5.50 per ounce), then it receives $55 of total revenue. Should it sell 12 ounces (at $4.50 per ounce), then it receives only $54 of total revenue.

For Feet-First Pharmaceutical the total revenue "curve" actually is a "curve." The slope of this curve falls as more output is produced, eventually reaching a peak, then becoming negative. The changing slope of this curve is due to the changing price.

Although this total revenue curve is based on the production activity of Feet-First Pharmaceutical, a well-known monopoly firm, it could also be for any firm with market control. Monopolistic competition and oligopoly firms that also face negatively-sloped demand curves generate comparable total revenue.

<= TOTAL REVENUE CURVE, MONOPOLISTIC COMPETITIONTOTAL REVENUE CURVE, PERFECT COMPETITION =>


Recommended Citation:

TOTAL REVENUE CURVE, MONOPOLY, AmosWEB Encyclonomic WEB*pedia, http://www.AmosWEB.com, AmosWEB LLC, 2000-2018. [Accessed: August 14, 2018].


Check Out These Related Terms...

     | total revenue | total revenue, monopoly | total revenue curve, perfect competition | total revenue curve, monopolistic competition | average revenue curve, monopoly | marginal revenue curve, monopoly | total cost curve | total product curve |


Or For A Little Background...

     | market structures | monopoly | monopoly characteristics | monopoly, demand | demand | demand price | law of demand | efficiency |


And For Further Study...

     | short-run production analysis | short-run analysis, monopoly | long-run analysis, monopoly | monopoly, efficiency | monopoly, breakeven output | profit curve, monopoly | short-run production alternatives, monopoly | monopoly, profit maximization |


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