In economics, the throw away paradox is a situation in which a person can gain by throwing away some of his property. It was first described by Robert J. Aumann and B. Pelegas a note on a similar paradox by David Gale.
There is an economy with two commodities (x and y) and two traders (e.g. Alice and Bob).
The paradox happens in the following situation. Both traders have the same utility function with the following characteristics:
One such function is , where is a certain parameter between 0 and 1, but many other such functions exist.
The explanation for the paradox is that when the quantity of x decreases, its price increases, and the increase in price is more than sufficient to compensate Alice for the decrease in quantity.
Within economics, the concept of utility is used to model worth or value. Its usage has evolved significantly over time. The term was introduced initially as a measure of pleasure or satisfaction within the theory of utilitarianism by moral philosophers such as Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill. The term has been adapted and reapplied within neoclassical economics, which dominates modern economic theory, as a utility function that represents a consumer's preference ordering over a choice set. Utility has thus become a more abstract concept, that is not necessarily solely based on the satisfaction/pleasure received.
In economics, an indifference curve connects points on a graph representing different quantities of two goods, points between which a consumer is indifferent. That is, any combinations of two products indicated by the curve will provide the consumer with equal levels of utility, and the consumer has no preference for one combination or bundle of goods over a different combination on the same curve. One can also refer to each point on the indifference curve as rendering the same level of utility (satisfaction) for the consumer. In other words, an indifference curve is the locus of various points showing different combinations of two goods providing equal utility to the consumer. Utility is then a device to represent preferences rather than something from which preferences come. The main use of indifference curves is in the representation of potentially observable demand patterns for individual consumers over commodity bundles.
The theory of consumer choice is the branch of microeconomics that relates preferences to consumption expenditures and to consumer demand curves. It analyzes how consumers maximize the desirability of their consumption as measured by their preferences subject to limitations on their expenditures, by maximizing utility subject to a consumer budget constraint.
In economics, a budget constraint represents all the combinations of goods and services that a consumer may purchase given current prices within his or her given income. Consumer theory uses the concepts of a budget constraint and a preference map to analyze consumer choices. Both concepts have a ready graphical representation in the two-good case.
In economics, the marginal rate of substitution (MRS) is the rate at which a consumer can give up some amount of one good in exchange for another good while maintaining the same level of utility. At equilibrium consumption levels, marginal rates of substitution are identical. The marginal rate of substitution is one of the three factors from marginal productivity, the others being marginal rates of transformation and marginal productivity of a factor.
In economics, an ordinal utility function is a function representing the preferences of an agent on an ordinal scale. Ordinal utility theory claims that it is only meaningful to ask which option is better than the other, but it is meaningless to ask how much better it is or how good it is. All of the theory of consumer decision-making under conditions of certainty can be, and typically is, expressed in terms of ordinal utility.
In game theory, the core is the set of feasible allocations that cannot be improved upon by a subset of the economy's agents. A coalition is said to improve upon or block a feasible allocation if the members of that coalition are better off under another feasible allocation that is identical to the first except that every member of the coalition has a different consumption bundle that is part of an aggregate consumption bundle that can be constructed from publicly available technology and the initial endowments of each consumer in the coalition.
Walras's law is a principle in general equilibrium theory asserting that budget constraints imply that the values of excess demand must sum to zero regardless of whether the prices are general equilibrium prices. That is:
In economics, convex preferences are an individual's ordering of various outcomes, typically with regard to the amounts of various goods consumed, with the property that, roughly speaking, "averages are better than the extremes". The concept roughly corresponds to the concept of diminishing marginal utility without requiring utility functions.
Competitive equilibrium is the traditional concept of economic equilibrium, appropriate for the analysis of commodity markets with flexible prices and many traders, and serving as the benchmark of efficiency in economic analysis. It relies crucially on the assumption of a competitive environment where each trader decides upon a quantity that is so small compared to the total quantity traded in the market that their individual transactions have no influence on the prices. Competitive markets are an ideal standard by which other market structures are evaluated.
In economics and consumer theory, quasilinear utility functions are linear in one argument, generally the numeraire. Quasilinear preferences can be represented by the utility function where is strictly concave. A nice property of the quasilinear utility function is that, the Marshallian/Walrasian demand for does not depend on wealth and therefore is not subject to a wealth effect. The absence of a wealth effect simplifies analysis and makes quasilinear utility functions a common choice for modelling. Furthermore, when utility is quasilinear, compensating variation (CV), equivalent variation (EV), and consumer surplus are algebraically equivalent. In mechanism design, quasilinear utility ensures that agents can compensate each other with side payments.
In economics and other social sciences, preference is the order that a person gives to alternatives based on their relative utility, a process which results in an optimal "choice". Instead of the prices of goods, personal income, or availability of goods, the character of the preferences is determined purely by a person's tastes. However, persons are still expected to act in their best interest.
A Robinson Crusoe economy is a simple framework used to study some fundamental issues in economics. It assumes an economy with one consumer, one producer and two goods. The title "Robinson Crusoe" is a reference to the 1719 novel of the same name authored by Daniel Defoe.
In microeconomics, an excess demand function is a function expressing excess demand for a product—the excess of quantity demanded over quantity supplied—in terms of the product's price and possibly other determinants. It is the product's demand function minus its supply function. In a pure exchange economy, the excess demand is the sum of all agents' demands minus the sum of all agents' initial endowments.
A group-envy-free division is a division of a resource among several partners such that every group of partners feel that their allocated share is at least as good as the share of any other group with the same size. The term is used especially in problems of fair division, such as resource allocation and fair cake-cutting.
The Journal of Mathematical Economics is a bimonthly peer-reviewed academic journal of mathematical economics published by Elsevier. It covers work in economic theory which expresses economic ideas using formal mathematical reasoning. The journal was established in 1974, with Werner Hildenbrand as the founding editor-in-chief. The current editor-in-chief is Atsushi Kajii. According to the Journal Citation Reports, the journal has a 2018 5-year impact factor of 0.725.
In economics and consumer theory, a linear utility function is a function of the form:
Efficiency and fairness are two major goals of welfare economics. Given a set of resources and a set of agents, the goal is to divide the resources among the agents in a way that is both Pareto efficient (PE) and envy-free (EF). The goal was first defined by David Schmeidler and Menahem Yaari. Later, the existence of such allocations has been proved under various conditions.
Resource monotonicity is a principle of fair division. It says that, if there are more resources to share, then all agents should be weakly better off; no agent should lose from the increase in resources. The RM principle has been studied in various division problems.
In theoretical economics, an abstract economy is a model that generalizes both the standard model of an exchange economy in microeconomics, and the standard model of a game in game theory. An equilibrium in an abstract economy generalizes both a Walrasian equilibrium in microeconomics, and a Nash equilibrium in game-theory.