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An Introduction to the Economic Theory of Market Behavior

Microeconomics from a Walrasian Perspective Donald W. Katzner, Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, US
The book provides substantial discussion of the model’s methodological background; returns to scale; the transformation surface and the fixed-factor-supply economy; existence, uniqueness, and stability of equilibria; the dynamics of market adjustments; methodological individualism and the theory of price determination; imperfectly competitive markets; welfare economics; and the role of money capital in the operation of the firm. The author suggests that the abandonment of general equilibrium theory by microeconomists is a mistake, and that it is too soon to give up on the possibility of constructing an adequate analysis of uniqueness, global stability, and price determination.
Extent: 736 pp
Hardback Price: $256.00 Web: $230.40
Publication Date: 2006
ISBN: 978 1 84542 510 4
Availability: In Stock
Paperback Price: $73.00 Web: $58.40
Publication Date: 2008
ISBN: 978 1 84844 247 4
Availability: In Stock
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  • Economics and Finance
  • Industrial Economics
In this carefully articulated investigation of the Walrasian general equilibrium model, the author sets forth one perception or explanation of how the microeconomy might operate. The focus is primarily on the behavior of individual consumers, firms and markets under perfectly competitive conditions and on the simultaneous interactions that occur among them. Central to his argument is that all of these elements fit together to form a unified whole for a complete, consistent, and cohesive picture of the perfectly competitive microeconomy.

The book provides substantial discussion of the model’s methodological background; returns to scale; the transformation surface and the fixed-factor-supply economy; existence, uniqueness, and stability of equilibria; the dynamics of market adjustments; methodological individualism and the theory of price determination; imperfectly competitive markets; welfare economics; and the role of money capital in the operation of the firm. The author suggests that the abandonment of general equilibrium theory by microeconomists is a mistake, and that it is too soon to give up on the possibility of constructing an adequate analysis of uniqueness, global stability, and price determination.

Students and scholars of economics will find much of interest in this thorough exploration of the operation of the microeconomy.
‘This is an important, rigorous, and thoroughly engaging text on the economic theory of market behavior. It is unique in the attention devoted to the philosophical underpinnings and the historical background of the Walrasian Theory. Professor Katzner challenges his readers to understand the strengths and the limitations of what has gone before, and he provides guidance as to how he would like to see price theory develop in the future. This is among those rare texts that is designed to inspire further research.’
– Hugo Sonnenschein, University of Chicago, US
Contents: Preface Preface to Walrasian Microeconomics 1. Introduction 2. The Theory of Demand: Utility Maximization 3. Topics in Demand Theory 4. Production and Cost 5. Models of the Firm 6. Markets in Isolation 7. Interacting Markets 8. The Fixed-Factor-Supply Economy 9. Dynamics and Equilibrium 10. Methodological Individualism and the Theory of Price Determination 11. Imperfect Competition 12. Economic Welfare 13. Capital 14. The Grand View 15. Some Alternative Assumptions and Methods of Analysis Appendices Index