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Chapter 15. Monopoly. Principles of Economics. Exercises 1-6.
1. A publisher faces the following demand schedule for the next novel from one of its popular authors:
The author is paid $2 million to write the book, and the marginal cost of publishing the book is a constant $10 per book.
a. Compute total revenue, total cost, and profit at each quantity. What quantity would a profit maximizing publisher choose? What price would it charge?
b. Compute marginal revenue. (Recall that MR =ΔTR/ΔQ.) How does marginal revenue compare
c. Graph the marginal-revenue, marginal-cost, and demand curves. At what quantity do the marginal revenue and marginal-cost curves cross? What does this signify?
d. In your graph, shade in the deadweight loss. Explain in words what this means.
e. If the author were paid $3 million instead of $2 million to write the book, how would this affect the publisher’s decision regarding what price to charge? Explain.
f. Suppose the publisher was not profit-maximizing but was concerned with maximizing economic efficiency. What price would it charge for the book? How much profit would it make at this price?
2. A small town is served by many competing supermarkets, which have the same constant marginal cost.
a. Using a diagram of the market for groceries, show the consumer surplus, producer surplus, and total surplus.
b. Now suppose that the independent supermarkets combine into one chain. Using a new diagram, show the new consumer surplus, producer surplus, and total surplus. Relative to the competitive market, what is the transfer from consumers to producers? What is the deadweight loss?
3. Johnny Rockabilly has just finished recording his latest CD. His record company’s marketing department determines that the demand for the CD is as follows:
"The company can produce the CD with no fixed cost" "and a variable cost of $5 per CD."
a. Find total revenue for quantity equal to 10,000, 20,000, and so on. What is the marginal revenue for each 10,000 increase in the quantity sold?
b. What quantity of CDs would maximize profit? What would the price be? What would the profit be?
c. If you were Johnny’s agent, what recording fee would you advise Johnny to demand from the record company? Why?
4. A company is considering building a bridge across a river. The bridge would cost $2 million to build and nothing to maintain. The following table shows the company’s anticipated demand over the lifetime of the bridge:
a. If the company were to build the bridge, what would be its profit-maximizing price? Would that be the efficient level of output? Why or why not?
b. If the company is interested in maximizing profit, should it build the bridge? What would be its profit or loss?
c. If the government were to build the bridge, what price should it charge?
d. Should the government build the bridge? Explain.
5. Larry, Curly, and Moe run the only saloon in town. Larry wants to sell as many drinks as possible without losing money. Curly wants the saloon to bring in as much revenue as possible. Moe wants to make the largest possible profits. Using a single diagram of the saloon’s demand curve and its cost curves, show the price and quantity combinations favored by each of the three partners. Explain.
6. The residents of the town Ectenia all love economics, and the mayor proposes building an economics museum. The museum has a fixed cost of $2,400,000 and no variable costs. There are 100,000 town residents, and each has the same demand for museum visits: QD = 10 − P, where P is the price of admission.
a. Graph the museum’s average-total-cost curve
and its marginal-cost curve. What kind of market
would describe the museum?
b. The mayor proposes financing the museum with a lump-sum tax of $24 and then opening the
museum to the public for free. How many times
would each person visit? Calculate the benefit each person would get from the museum, measured as consumer surplus minus the new tax.
c. The mayor’s antitax opponent says the museum
should finance itself by charging an admission fee.
What is the lowest price the museum can charge
without incurring losses? (Hint: Find the number
of visits and museum profits for prices of $2, $3,
$4, and $5.)
d. For the break-even price you found in part (c), calculate
each resident’s consumer surplus. Compared with the mayor’s plan, who is better off with this admission fee, and who is worse off? Explain.
e. What real-world considerations absent in the
problem above might provide reasons to favor an