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KALDOR-HICKS IMPROVEMENT: Based on the Kaldor-Hicks efficiency criterion, the notion that an action improves efficiency if the willingness to pay of those benefiting exceed the willingness to accept of those harmed. In other words, if those gains exceed those losses, or the benefits exceed the costs, then social welfare is improved and undertaking the action provides a net benefit to society. In other words, the winners can, in principle, compensate the losers for their loss, and still come out ahead. The actual compensation, however, is required. A contrasting condition for attaining efficiency is the Pareto improvement.

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Lesson 20: Oligopoly | Unit 2: Structure Page: 6 of 24

Topic: Concentration <=PAGE BACK | PAGE NEXT=>

  • It's quite useful to identify or measure the degree of concentration in an oligopoly market. This is generally accomplished in one of three ways.

    • Market Share: The simplest measure of concentration is the share of the market held by one or more firms in the industry.

    • Concentration Ratio: This measure of concentration combines the market shares for the largest number of firms in an industry to indicate the degree of market concentration.

    • Herfindahl Index: The Herfindahl index includes the market shares of all firms in the market.

  • Consideration and analysis of concentration using either of these three measures is really only relevant for oligopoly.

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ARC ELASTICITY

The average elasticity for discrete changes in two variables. The distinguishing characteristic of arc elasticity is that percentage changes are calculated based on the average of initial and ending values of each variable, rather than initial values. Arc elasticity is generally calculated using the midpoint elasticity formula. The contrast to arc elasticity is point elasticity. For infinitesimally small changes in two variables, arc elasticity is the same as point elasticity.

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