micnotes - NOTES FOR MICROECONOMICS by Prof. Nicholas...

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NOTES FOR MICROECONOMICS by Prof. Nicholas Economides Stern School of Business Spring 20 10 Copyright © Nicholas Economides
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1 MICROECONOMICS is about 1. Buying decisions of the individual 2. Buying and selling decisions of the firm 3. The determination of prices and in markets 4. The quantity, quality and variety of products 5. Profits 6. Consumers’ satisfaction There are two sides in a market for a consumption good DEMAND SUPPLY Created by Consumers Created by firms Each consumer maximizes Each firm maximizes its satisfaction (“utility”) profits ------------------------------- ------------------------------ CONSUMPTION THEORY PRODUCTION THEORY
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2 We will first study consumption and later production. In the third part of the course we will take the “demand” schedule from the consumption analysis and the “supply” schedule from the production analysis and put them together in a market . The price, and the quantity exchanged will be determined in the market. We will also discuss the performance and efficiency of markets. A. CONSUMPTION ANALYSIS UNDER CERTAINTY 1. Goods are products or services that consumers or businesses desire. Examples: a book, a telephone call, insurance coverage. Goods may be directly desired by consumers or may contribute to the production of other goods that are desired by consumers. For example a machine used in the production of cars is desirable because it is useful in the production of cars, although it has no direct value to a consumer. Bads are products or services that consumers desire less of . Examples: garbage, pollution, some telephone calls. Clearly, a good for one consumer could be a bad for another. 2. If possible, each consumer would consume a very large (infinite) amount of each good. But, each individual is constrained by his/her ability to pay for these goods . The limitation of total funds available to an individual defines the
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3 budget constraint . Therefore a consumer has to maximize his/her satisfaction while not spending more than he/she has, i.e. , without violating the budget constraint. 3. We are interested to find the best choice for a consumer that has a limited amount of funds. We accomplish this in three steps. At the first step, we define the available choices taking into account the limitation of funds. At the second step, we discuss the desires/wants of the consumer. At the third step, we find the optimal choice for the consumer by putting together the information we gathered in the previous two steps. STEP 1 : We first analyze the available choices to a consumer that possesses limited funds. Suppose there are only two goods, X and Y, and they are sold at prices p x and p y per unit respectively. If a consumer buys x units of good X and y units of good Y, she spends xp x on good X, and yp y on good Y. Total expenditure is E = xp x + yp y . The pair (x, y) is called a (consumption)
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micnotes - NOTES FOR MICROECONOMICS by Prof. Nicholas...

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