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JOINT VENTURE: An activity undertaken by two or more entities in which each entity has some degree of control. Joint ventures are commonly undertaken by two or more business firms, allowing each firm to participate in the benefits of the venture without the loss of control that would come from a formal merger of the firms. For example, a bank and a computer company might undertake a joint venture to develop a computerized, online payment system. Joint ventures are usually risky activities and often related to the development of new technology.

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Lesson Contents
Unit 1: Intro
  • Definition
  • A Few Examples
  • Market Control
  • Competition
  • Unit 1 Summary
  • Unit 2: Four Types
  • A Continuum
  • Perfect Competition
  • Monopoly
  • Monopolistic Competition
  • Oligopoly
  • Other Structurres
  • Unit 2 Summary
  • Unit 3: Getting Control
  • Profit Motivation
  • Entry Barriers
  • Product Differentiation
  • Unit 3 Summary
  • Unit 4: Using Control
  • Takes And Makers
  • Demand Curves
  • Practices
  • Unit 4 Summary
  • Unit 5: Government
  • Efficiency
  • Regulation
  • Unit 5 Summary
  • Course Home
    Market Structures

    Our investigation into market structures lays the foundation for a closer examination of monopoly, monopolistic competition, and oligopoly. This lesson takes a look at how markets are structured based on their competitiveness, the degree of market control held by firms, the acquisition of this market control, and the use market control.

    • The first unit of this lesson, Competition And Control, begins this lesson with a look at competition and market control.
    • In the second unit, Four Types, we examine the four basic types of market structures -- perfect competition, monopoly, monopolistic competition, and oligopoly.
    • The third unit, Getting Control, then looks at two key ways that firms are able to acquire or increase their market control -- product differentiation and entry barriers.
    • In the fourth unit, Using Control, we investigate what firms do when they have market control.
    • The fifth and final unit, Government, then closes this lesson by considering the role government plays in regulating market control.

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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 by 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.

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    Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time looking for a downtown retail store wanting to buy either a birthday greeting card for your aunt or a wall poster commemorating the moon landing. Be on the lookout for cardboard boxes.
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    Woodrow Wilson's portrait adorned the $100,000 bill that was removed from circulation in 1929. Woodrow Wilson was removed from circulation in 1924.
    "And while the law of competition may be sometimes hard for the individual, it is best for the race, because it ensures the survival of the fittest in every department. "

    -- Andrew Carnegie, entrepreneur

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