In economic theory, imperfect competition is a type of market structure showing some but not all features of competitive markets.
Forms of imperfect competition include:
Anti-competitive practices are business or government practices that prevent or reduce competition in a market (see restraint of trade).
These can include:
In economics, industrial organization is a field that builds on the theory of the firm by examining the structure of (and, therefore, the boundaries between) firms and markets. Industrial organization adds real-world complications to the perfectly competitive model, complications such as transaction costs, limited information, and barriers to entry of new firms that may be associated with imperfect competition. It analyzes determinants of firm and market organization and behavior as between competition and monopoly, including from government actions.
There are different approaches to the subject. One approach is descriptive in providing an overview of industrial organization, such as measures of competition and the size-concentration of firms in an industry. A second approach uses microeconomic models to explain internal firm organization and market strategy, which includes internal research and development along with issues of internal reorganization and renewal. A third aspect is oriented to public policy as to economic regulation, antitrust law, and, more generally, the economic governance of law in defining property rights, enforcing contracts, and providing organizational infrastructure.
Strategic management analyzes the major initiatives taken by a company's top management on behalf of owners, involving resources and performance in internal and external environments.
In management theory and practice, a distinction is often made between operational management and strategic management. Operational management is concerned primarily with responses to internal issues such as improving efficiency and controlling costs. Strategic management is concerned primarily with responses to external issues such as in understanding customers' needs and responding to competitive forces. Widely-cited Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter identifies three principles underlying strategic positioning: creating a "unique and valuable position", making trade-offs by choosing "what not to do", and creating "fit" by aligning company activities to with one another to support the chosen strategy.
In theories of competition in economics, barriers to entry, also known as barrier to entry, are obstacles that make it difficult to enter a given market. The term can refer to hindrances a firm faces in trying to enter a market or industry—such as government regulation and patents, or a large, established firm taking advantage of economies of scale—or those an individual faces in trying to gain entrance to a profession—such as education or licensing requirements.
Because barriers to entry protect incumbent firms and restrict competition in a market, they can contribute to distortionary prices. The existence of monopolies or market power is often aided by barriers to entry.
Switching barriers or switching costs are terms used in microeconomics, strategic management, and marketing to describe any impediment to a customer's changing of suppliers.
In many markets, consumers are forced to incur costs when switching from one supplier to another. These costs are called switching costs and can come in many forms.
Finance is the allocation of assets and liabilities over time under conditions of certainty and uncertainty. A key point in finance is the time value of money, which states that a unit of currency today is worth more than the same unit of currency tomorrow. Finance aims to price assets based on their risk level, and expected rate of return. Finance can be broken into three different sub categories: public finance, corporate finance and personal finance.
The Internet is a global system of interconnected computer networks that use the standard Internet protocol suite (TCP/IP) to serve several billion users worldwide. It is a network of networks that consists of millions of private, public, academic, business, and government networks, of local to global scope, that are linked by a broad array of electronic, wireless and optical networking technologies. The Internet carries an extensive range of information resources and services, such as the inter-linked hypertext documents of the World Wide Web (WWW), the infrastructure to support email, and peer-to-peer networks.
Most traditional communications media including telephone, music, film, and television are being reshaped or redefined by the Internet, giving birth to new services such as voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and Internet Protocol television (IPTV). Newspaper, book and other print publishing are adapting to website technology, or are reshaped into blogging and web feeds. The Internet has enabled and accelerated new forms of human interactions through instant messaging, Internet forums, and social networking. Online shopping has boomed both for major retail outlets and small artisans and traders. Business-to-business and financial services on the Internet affect supply chains across entire industries.