# Questions tagged [microeconomics]

Microeconomics is a branch of economics that studies the market behavior of individual actors (usually firms and consumers) and the aggregation of their actions in different institutional frameworks (usually the market).

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### The Savage sure thing principle and Subjective utility representation

I have tried reading and understanding Savage's proof of the subjective utility representation, it is too complicated. Is anyone aware of a shorter/more elegant proof of this? It is not a problem if ...
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### Selecting the best utility function for households

I have little to no background in micro, but I'm learning about utility functions. It seems that there are many forms of utility functions for households. In general terms, how does one go on to ...
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### Relationship between strong and weak axioms of revealed preference

I keep seeing these following facts just asserted while reading: Let W = weak axiom of revealed preference Let S = strong axiom of revealed preference Let C = the commodity vector $W \iff S$ ...
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### Throw-away paradox with independent goods

The throw-away paradox is a situation in which a trader can gain by throwing away some of his initial endowment. The specific example, brought by Aumann and Peleg in 1974, concerns an economy with ...
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### Has any progress been made on the Pacman Conjecture on Finite Time Horizons?

The Pacman conjecture states that the optimal strategy for monopolistic durable goods manufacturers is to set price high and slowly drop it (i.e. eating their way down the demand curve). Empirically ...
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I already read and ask NOT about pp 52-54, Principles of Microeconomics, 7 Ed, 2014, by N Gregory Mankiw. I understand such numerical examples that corroborate Comparative Advantage, but how can I ...
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### An agent's expected utility depends only on mean and variance

Consider an agent with the expected utility function $U(L) = \sum_{s=1}^{S}\pi_s U(Y_s)$ over the lottery $L = (Y_s, \pi_s)$ where $\pi_s$ is the probability of state $s$, $Y_s$ are state $s$ payoffs, ...
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### Why does quantity supplied increase with price in economics?

The Law of Supply is my worst enemy in economics because I could never truly understand it, and as a result, the stuff I learned after that was built on a weak foundation. The Law of Demand is totally ...
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### Can someone explain graphically why MRS is invariant under monotonic transformation?

Let $U(x,y)$ be a utility function. Suppose I have an indifference curve for which $U(x,y) = \bar{U}$. Then $dU = 0$ along the curve and I can rearrange to find the MRS. Suppose I have a monotonic ...
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### In microeconomics : is this the contradiction in the atomicity of firms ?

Let $p$ be the market demand. It is a function of the market production $Q$. Let $q_i$ be the production of firm $i$. Reading Steve Keen (in Debunking Economics, chapter II) quoting George Stigler, I ...
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### Economists studying the eldery and intergenerational transfers

Does anyone knows who are the leading economists in the field of elderly and intergenerational transfers? I'd like to know what are the current topics they are working on.
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### Fixed cost of a firm

Suppose that a firm has a total cost function given by: $TC(q) = \frac{5}{q+1} + 5 + 5q + q^2$. What is the fixed cost? I seem to be able to come up with two "answers", which cannot be correct. My ...
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### In simple terms: what are the implications of homothetic and nonhomothetic consumer preferences?

I am looking for a simple explanation of the implication of having homothetic/nonhomethetic preferences in relation to consumers' preferences when consuming goods.
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### Ambiguous definition of Substitution and Income effect?

Consider the (schematic) indifference curve diagram of two good-quantities Q1, Q2: According to Wikipedia we call the vector AB' the substitution effect and the vector B'B as the income effect. I ...
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### Are billboards beneficial for the economy? Why?

Billboards cost money to make and don't really seem to significantly benefit anyone other than billboard-makers. A company c putting up billboards presumably increases profits from the resulting ...
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### Time costs and the St. Petersburg paradox

In the St. Petersburg paradox, we end up with the problem that a rational agent should be willing to play the game for any wager, if we look at expected income or utility of expected income. The ...
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### Properties on conditional demand correspondence from the textbook of Mas-Colell et al

I have a question on the properties of conditional demand correspondence Let $z(w,q)$ be the conditional factor demand correspondence, i.e. the solution of the cost minimization problem \begin{align} \...
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### Why do firms losing money almost always reduce labor costs via layoffs instead of pay cuts?

At least in the United States, firms seem to almost always reduce labor costs via layoffs rather than pay cuts. Pay cuts are so rare that they're literally headline news. From an economic standpoint, ...
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### Does the envelope theorem hold at a corner solution?

Suppose we have the following production function: $$F(L,K)=\max_{L_K}H(L,L_K,K)=\max_{L_K}\left[(L-L_K+1)^\alpha(L_K+K)^{1-\alpha}\right]=(L-L_K^*+1)^\alpha(L_K^*+K)^{1-\alpha}$$ With the ...
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### Can integrals be interpreted simultaneously as aggregates and averages? (Mas-Colell et al. 1995, Proposition 4.C.4)

I'm currently reading chapter 4 of Mas-Colell, Whinston, and Green (1995). I have a problem with the way integrals are treated. For instance, Proposition 4.C.4 (p.113) states that when wealth is ...
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### Weak Axiom of Revealed Preference

Maybe this is a well-known fact that I have somehow overlooked or forgotten etc., but I found myself curious recently if there are any conclusions about WARP holding over different dimensions for a ...
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### Estimating Price Elasticity from sales

I'm looking at data for an online shop with clothing items listed at different prices. I'd like to use this information to do some kind of profit maximization (i.e. I'd like to have some understanding ...
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### The Sonnenschein-Mantel-Debreu results, what are the implications for macroeconomics?

I have always wondered why such a negative result such as SonnenscheināMantelāDebreu theorem (SMD) theorem is usually ignored or disregarded by practitioners, specially in macro. The result roughly ...
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### Does vNM rationality depend on the good chosen?

The von Neumann-Morgenstern theorem states that, assuming a person's preferences under risk satisfy certain rationality axioms, then there exists a utility function u, the von Neumann utility function,...
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### If all firms in an economy are in monopolistic competition with constant elasticity of substitution, can they profit-maximize at $MC=MR=AC$?

Suppose all firms are monopolistically competitive with constant elasticity of substitution. Can they profit maximize at the quantity point $MC=AC$ (So $P \neq MC$ but $Q$ is set at where $MC=MR=AC$ ...
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### Public Goods - Voluntary provision

I am currently reading the book "Microeconomics: Principles and Analysis" by Cowell (2006), page 452-453. e have a two-commodity world, in which there are ${n_h}$ agents (households): commodity 1 is a ...
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### Where do computational economists work

Does anybody know what kind of work or where computational economists end up working? It seems most end up in research...
The inter temporal elasticity of substitution between two periods of time is $$\sigma=-\frac{d[\ln(c(s)/c(t))]}{d[\ln(U'(c(s))/U'(c(t)))]}$$ I need to prove that \lim_{s \to t}\sigma = -\frac{U'(c(t)...