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Production before trade
Country Oil Production (barrels) Corn Production (bushels)
Saudi Arabia (C) 60 10
United States (C') 20 60
Total World Production 80 70

The slope of the production possibility frontier illustrates the opportunity cost of producing oil in terms of corn. Using all its resources, the United States can produce 50 barrels of oil or 100 bushels of corn. So the opportunity cost of one barrel of oil is two bushels of corn—or the slope is 1/2. Thus, in the U.S. production possibility frontier graph, every increase in oil production of one barrel implies a decrease of two bushels of corn. Saudi Arabia can produce 100 barrels of oil or 25 bushels of corn. The opportunity cost of producing one barrel of oil is the loss of 1/4 of a bushel of corn that Saudi workers could otherwise have produced. In terms of corn, notice that Saudi Arabia gives up the least to produce a barrel of oil. These calculations are summarized in [link] .

Opportunity cost and comparative advantage
Country Opportunity cost of one unit — Oil (in terms of corn) Opportunity cost of one unit — Corn (in terms of oil)
Saudi Arabia ¼ 4
United States 2 ½

Again recall that comparative advantage was defined as the opportunity cost of producing goods. Since Saudi Arabia gives up the least to produce a barrel of oil, ( 1 4  <  2 in [link] ) it has a comparative advantage in oil production. The United States gives up the least to produce a bushel of corn, so it has a comparative advantage in corn production.

In this example, there is symmetry between absolute and comparative advantage. Saudi Arabia needs fewer worker hours to produce oil (absolute advantage, see [link] ), and also gives up the least in terms of other goods to produce oil (comparative advantage, see [link] ). Such symmetry is not always the case, as we will show after we have discussed gains from trade fully. But first, read the following Clear It Up feature to make sure you understand why the PPF line in the graphs is straight.

Can a production possibility frontier be straight?

When you first met the production possibility frontier (PPF) in the chapter on Choice in a World of Scarcity it was drawn with an outward-bending shape. This shape illustrated that as inputs were transferred from producing one good to another—like from education to health services—there were increasing opportunity costs. In the examples in this chapter, the PPFs are drawn as straight lines, which means that opportunity costs are constant. When a marginal unit of labor is transferred away from growing corn and toward producing oil, the decline in the quantity of corn and the increase in the quantity of oil is always the same. In reality this is possible only if the contribution of additional workers to output did not change as the scale of production changed. The linear production possibilities frontier is a less realistic model, but a straight line simplifies calculations. It also illustrates economic themes like absolute and comparative advantage just as clearly.

Gains from trade

Consider the trading positions of the United States and Saudi Arabia after they have specialized and traded. Before trade, Saudi Arabia produces/consumes 60 barrels of oil and 10 bushels of corn. The United States produces/consumes 20 barrels of oil and 60 bushels of corn. Given their current production levels, if the United States can trade an amount of corn fewer than 60 bushels and receives in exchange an amount of oil greater than 20 barrels, it will gain from trade    . With trade, the United States can consume more of both goods than it did without specialization    and trade. (Recall that the chapter Welcome to Economics! defined specialization as it applies to workers and firms. Specialization is also used to describe the occurrence when a country shifts resources to focus on producing a good that offers comparative advantage.) Similarly, if Saudi Arabia can trade an amount of oil less than 60 barrels and receive in exchange an amount of corn greater than 10 bushels, it will have more of both goods than it did before specialization and trade. [link] illustrates the range of trades that would benefit both sides.

Questions & Answers

Explanation about law of demand
Marisol Reply
The price of the good or service meaning?
Marisol
What is consumer expectation?
Marisol
what are the determinants of demand and explain each?
Marisol Reply
Define microeconomics and macroeconomics..
Odirile Reply
what is the price of the good or service?
Marisol Reply
suppose price of per good is (ice-cream) is 5 the consumer are ready for buying 2 goods(2 ice creams) if price will increase from 5 to 10 per good then the consumer will demand only one good or one ice-cream because price is increased and his income is limited
Wani
what is income buyer?
Marisol
in law of demand we assume some factors constant some factors are income taste future preference constant
Wani
what is price of related goods or services?
Marisol
suppose your income per month is 10, 000 and your needs satisfied by these 10,000 if price of good will increase you need more than 10,000 to satisfy your needs that is why we says at higher price demand of goods decrease
Wani
What is the taste of preferences of consumers will drive demand?
Marisol
suppose you are eating pizza and u fell its taste good you will buy more pizza this called taste we assume in law of demand that taste of goods remain Same
Wani
related goods are either complementary goods are substitute goods
Wani
relationship between price and quantity? about the law of demand
Marisol Reply
P⬆️ Qd⬇️
DNA
what is law of demand?
Marisol
If Prince increases, Quantity demand will decrease and vice versa. So relationship b/w price and demand is inverse. There are some exceptions also. Like complementary goods and substitute goods.
DNA
any other answers? thankyou anyways. Twas a big help.
Marisol
the law of demand states that, "conditional on all else being equal, as the price of a good increases, quantity demanded decreases; conversely, as the price of a good decreases, quantity demanded increases".
DNA
law of demand says when price of good increase there demand will decrease and vice versa in short law of demand show negative relationship between price and demand of goods
Wani
All other factors like income, taste, preference, season shall remain constant
DNA
Rohi g Bilkul sahi farmov veh!
DNA
law of demand not apply on Griffen goods and luxurious goods
Wani
sir will u plz explain me why we add Griffen goods in aggregate demand no body explain me this question
Wani
What is the concept of rationality in economics
Odirile Reply
Remuneration 10000 Net trade surplus 8000 Provision for depreciation 500 Indirect taxation 700 subsides 1000 Net factor payments 500 using information above calculate: 1GDP at factor cost 2GDP at market Price 3GNP at market price 4National income
Odirile
rationality simply means that you will always go for best choice in the available set of choice.
Rahul
a. Assume that Good X is a Giffen good, illustrate and explain the income and substitution effects for a decrease in the price of good X.
Thulisa Reply
as price of good X(assume as Griffen good) decrease income of the consumer increase , consumer will demand other goods rather than the Griffen goods thus at lower prices of good X it's demand will decrease.
Wani
what is law of demand
Hugo Reply
what is the law of demand
Hugo
What is the law of demand
Hugo
just considering the relationship between price and quantity, holding other factors constant.
Donation
when the price of a commodity increases, it's demand will decrease. and when the price of a commodity decreases, it's demand will increase, other things remaining the same or constant. That is called Law of Demand.
Azka
other things remained constant there is inverse relationship between price and quantity demand i .e when price of a commodity increased the demand of quantity will decrease and vice- versa.
khatoon
right @KhatoonNafisa
Azka
sir define me prison of delima
Ibrahim Reply
it is a paradoxical situation, where two individuals acts for their self interest but don't achieve the optimal point.
Rahul
gays why we add Griffen goods in aggregate demand as we know Griffen goods have positive relationships that means if price increase demand of goods also increase .but in aggregate demand there is a negative relationship between price and aggregate output.
Wani
what is the concept of rationality in economics?
Odirile
explain the determinants of derive demand?
what financial market is all about
Emmanuel Reply
What happens to the ppf curve due to following events a) A relaxation of policies allowing more foreign direct investment into the country b) Increasing the minimum wage level c) A decrease in expenditure on research and development d) An increase in the retirement age
luvi Reply
is truly
Ibrahim
Discuss various from the imperfect competition
ZuBaIr Reply
hi how do get your workers to be more competitive
Margaret
hey where from you all
Wani
kashmir
Ahmad
tell me the defference between budget constraint and limited resources
Emmanuel Reply
budget constraint is the sub-part of limited resources. budget constraint can be for extreme short period of time like few hours but same is not true for the limited resources.
Rahul
what is budget constraint?
Emmanuel Reply
Budget constraint refers to all the combinations of goods and services which an individual can buy on a given price and with his given income.
Mandeep

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Source:  OpenStax, Microeconomics. OpenStax CNX. Aug 03, 2014 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11627/1.10
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