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ALLOCATIVE EFFICIENCY: Obtaining the most consumer satisfaction from available resources. Allocative efficiency means that our economy is doing the best job possible of satisfying unlimited wants and needs with limited resources -- that is, of addressing the problem of scarcity.

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SHORT-RUN PRODUCTION: An analysis of the production decision made by a firm in the short run, with the ultimate goal of explaining the law of supply and the upward-sloping supply curve. The central feature of this short-run analysis is the law of diminishing marginal returns, which results in the short run when larger amounts of a variable input, like labor, are added to a fixed input, like capital. This analysis of short-run production is but the first step in a brisk walk toward a better understanding of supply. Further steps include the cost of short-run production, especially marginal cost, and the market structure in which a firm operates, such as perfect competition or monopoly.

     See also | fixed input | variable input | law of diminishing marginal returns | marginal product | total product | average product | marginal cost | total variable cost | total cost | total fixed cost | profit maximization | total revenue and total cost | marginal revenue and marginal cost |


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INELASTIC DEMAND

The general elasticity relation in which relatively large changes in price cause relatively small changes in quantity demanded. Large changes in price cause relatively small changes in quantity demanded or the percentage change in quantity demanded is smaller than the percentage change in price. This characterization of elasticity is most important for the price elasticity of demand. Inelastic demand is one of two general elasticity relations for demand. The other is elastic demand.

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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time calling an endless list of 800 numbers trying to buy either a set of luggage without wheels or a how-to book on wine tasting. Be on the lookout for cardboard boxes.
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A thousand years before metal coins were developed, clay tablet "checks" were used as money by the Babylonians.
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