Economics 304k syllabus fall 2011

Economics 304k syllabus fall 2011 - Economics 304k-Unique #...

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Economics 304k-Unique # 34035 Introduction to Microeconomics Professor David Sibley BRB 3.102A 475-8545 sibley@austin.utexas.edu Overview An “economy” is a term we use to refer to the billions of interactions that take place each day between buyers and sellers. Microeconomics is the study of how these agents behave as individuals and how their collective actions determine the prices that we pay for goods and services and the quantities that are sold. One important part of microeconomics (or, simply, “micro” from now on) involves the study of what objectives individual buyers and sellers have that guide their behavior. For example, firms may maximize profits and individuals may maximize overall welfare, or “utility”. A second important part of micro involves the study of constraints and limitations that buyers and sellers face in their everyday activities. For example, when a buyer at a store wants to buy something, he or she may have little idea what the price of that item would be at another store. A seller may want to expand, but has financing problems. Third, we study how the individual actions of buyers and sellers work together to determine the price we pay, the qualities of various goods, how much people get paid and how much gets produced, of all the millions of goods and services that we see around us. Finally, once we understand these things, we can study how government policy can either make things better or worse. The
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Economics 304k syllabus fall 2011 - Economics 304k-Unique #...

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