Low Wages and Salaries

Low Wages and Salaries
Low Wages and Salaries

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Low Wages and Salaries

Assessment 1: Report Overview For this assessment, write a 1000 word report on the issues below:
Low Wages and Salaries

Your report should be structured as follows:

1. Introduction (200 words): Define the issue and use Australian research and statistics to explain how common it is, and the likely impacts of this violence (for instance, mental or physical health impacts, number of hospitalisations, and other indications of impact).

2. Theoretical section (800 words): Select TWO theories from the following list, and apply them to the issue: Liberal feminism, Marxist/socialist feminism, radical feminism, critical masculinities theory. You need to pick the most appropriate theory to help you explain the issue. Think carefully about the theories you select.

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Write 400 words on EACH theory, in which you briefly define the theory, and then describe how that particular theory would explain the issue you have selected. For instance, if you select Marxist/socialist feminism for the issue of sexual assault, then your 400 word paragraph needs to explain what Marxist/socialist feminism is, and present a Marxist/socialist feminist explanation for sexual assault.

Your bibliography should contain no fewer than EIGHT academic sources. Any media sources are additional to this.

Marking Criteria

1. Accurate and clear presentation

2. Further research and comprehensive understanding (AT LEAST 8 ACADEMIC SOURCES)

3. Logical and clear structure

4. Quality of written expression

5. Correctly formatted citations and bibliography.

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Inflation and Interest Rates

Inflation and Interest Rates
Inflation and Interest Rates

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Inflation and Interest Rates


Solve three problems addressing inflation and interest rates affecting the financial environment, including the real risk-free rate, expected interest rate, detailed risk premium, and ratio analysis.

By successfully completing this assessment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and assessment criteria:

  • Competency 1: Maximize shareholder wealth.
    • Compute real risk-free rate of return based on data presented.
    • Determine yield on 2-year and 3-year Treasury securities.
  • Competency 2: Evaluate the financial health of the firm
    • Assess the default risk of a corporate bond.


There are different determinants of market interest rates. Try to answer such questions as, “What determines the shape of the yield curve?” and “How is the yield curve used to estimate future interest rates?,” which are important considerations for financial managers.

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The following optional resources are provided to support you in completing the assessment or to provide a helpful context.

  • Brigham, E. F., & Houston, J. F. (2016). Fundamentals of financial management (14th ed.). Boston, MA: Cengage.

Assessment Instructions

For this assessment, complete Problems 1–3 on inflation and interest rates affecting financial environment. You may solve the problems algebraically, or you may use a financial calculator or an Excel spreadsheet. In addition to your solution to each computational problem, you must show the supporting work leading to your solution to receive credit for your answer. Note the following:

  • You may need an HP 10B II business calculator.
  • You may use Word or Excel, but you will find Excel to be most helpful for creating spreadsheets.
  • If you choose to solve the problems algebraically, be sure to show your computations.
  • If you use a financial calculator, show your input values.
  • If you use an Excel spreadsheet, show your input values and formulas.

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Analysis of the Australian Economy

Australian Economy
Australian Economy

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Business Cycle Properties and Macro Forecasting of the Australian Economy

Executive Summary

Business cycle properties and the macro forecasting of the economy of Australia can be appropriately accomplished utilising the necessary parameters or economic indicators. Hence the ability to effectively use these economic indicators facilitates precise and accurate forecasting of the economy.  Therefore, these economic indicators have been widely used in the process of forecasting the direction which is likely to be taken by a country’s economy.

In this report seven major economic indicators have been considered to enable forecasting of the Australian economy using judgemental approach. These economic indicators include: inflation rate; private final consumption; inventory investment; gross fixed investment, nominal exchange rate between Australia and the United States; unemployment rate as well as labour productivity. The utilisation of these economic indicators has played a significant role to facilitate forecasting of the Australian economy through their keen evaluation and detrending. Analysis Australian Economy

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Conducting effective analysis of economic indicators of any country is one of the most appropriate ways of forecasting the future performance of such economy. This approach has often been used to predict the expected performance of the Australian economy in future for quite some time (Fisher, Otto and Voss, 1996). Hence the practice of utilising business cycle properties in the forecasting of the economy in Australia is widespread.

In particular, three approaches are essentially used in the forecasting of a country’s macroeconomics such as: judgemental forecasting, statistical forecasting, and model forecasting. However, judgemental forecasting which is going to be used in this report analysis involves gathering various kinds of data and information from official sources, to aid future macroeconomic forecasting activity on the basis of one’s informal judgement concerning the way in a country’s economy works (Evans, 2009). 

Analysis Australian Economy

However, there are certain properties of business cycles which enable them to be effectively used in combination with other economic indicators in the forecasting of the economy (Evans, 2009). For instance, the business cycle properties used in facilitating the forecasting of the Australian economy include: aggregate economic activity fluctuations; business cycles are not periodic but recurrent; business cycles contraction/recession and expansion/boom meaning they have a trough and a peak both of which act as the turning points; business cycles are indicative of economic activity persistence and also business cycles have comovements of many macro variables (Edey, 5).

Thus, the significance of conducting this empirical analysis of the Australian economy is to reiterate the fact that as an economist whether in the government or private sector, often analysis of economic information, data and policies will be inevitable in order to enable the process of making informed managerial or economic decisions (Fisher, Otto and Voss, 1996). 

Therefore, this report will specifically consider certain economic indicators as means of forecasting Australian economy such as inflation rate, private final consumption, inventory investment, gross fixed investment, nominal exchange rate between Australia and the United States, unemployment rate and labour productivity. 


Inflation rate

Analysis Australian Economy

Table 1: Analytical measures of consumer price inflation (CPI)

QuarterlyThe rate of quarterly consumer price inflation (CPI)
Mar 19960.4
Jun 19960.7
Sep 19960.3
Dec 19960.2
Mar 19970.2
Jun 1997-0.3
Sep 1997-0.4
Dec 19970.3
Mar 19980.3
Jun 19980.6
Sep 19980.2
Dec 19980.5
Mar 1999-0.1
Jun 19990.4
Sep 19990.9
Dec 19990.8
Mar 20003.8
Jun 20003.7
Sep 20000.3
Dec 20001.1
Mar 20010.8
Jun 20010.3
Sep 20010.9
Dec 20010.9
Mar 20020.7
Jun 20020.7
Sep 20021.3
Dec 20020.0
Mar 20030.6
Jun 20030.5
Sep 20030.9
Dec 20030.5
Mar 20040.9
Jun 20040.5
Sep 20040.4
Dec 20040.8
Mar 20050.7
Jun 20050.6
Sep 20050.9
Dec 20050.5
Mar 20060.9
Jun 20061.6
Sep 20060.9
Dec 2006-0.1
Mar 20070.1
Jun 20071.2
Sep 2007-0.3
Dec 20070.1
Mar 20080.5
Jun 20081.0
Sep 20080.5
Dec 20080.9
Mar 20090.6
Jun 20090.7
Sep 20090.4
Dec 20091.6
Mar 20100.9
Jun 20100.6
Sep 20100.0
Dec 20100.1
Mar 20110.5
Jun 20110.9
Sep 20110.6
Dec 20110.0
Mar 20120.1
Jun 20120.5
Sep 20120.4

Source: The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)

Inventory investment 

Inventory investment in the business cycle refers to the inventories as all materials such as finished goods that are business owned and work in progress, whether at business locations or elsewhere.  The business holds these items anticipating selling a product.  However, inventory investment is usually regarded as an additional contribution to GDP. Fluctuations in inventories which an often phenomenon plays a significant role in the amplification and exacerbation of the business cycle as well as continuing to significantly affect GDP growth   negatively at times of economic downturn (Evans, 2009).

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 Gross fixed investment

Gross fixed investment involves the entry records totalling to business spending based on fixed assets, such as machinery, factories, dwellings, equipment and raw materials inventories, which are essential in providing the basis for production in future (Evans, 2009). Therefore, gross fixed investment is measured gross asset’s depreciation including investment that is necessary as a mere replacement of scrapped or worn-out capital.

Table 2: Gross fixed investment rate and percentage 

YearInvestmentPer cent Change
199624.318-1.91 %
199624.3180.00 %
199723.855-1.90 %
199723.8550.00 %
199825.988.91 %
199825.980.00 %
199926.1290.57 %
199926.1290.00 %
200024.803-5.07 %
200024.8030.00 %
200123.19-6.50 %
200123.190.00 %
200224.8257.05 %
200224.8250.00 %
200326.6187.22 %
200326.6180.00 %
200427.0381.58 %
200427.0380.00 %
200527.8553.02 %
200527.8550.00 %
200627.549-1.10 %
200627.5490.00 %
200729.2596.21 %
200729.2590.00 %
200829.5410.96 %
200829.5410.00 %
200927.853-5.71 %
200927.8530.00 %
201027.592-0.94 %
201027.5920.00 %

Source: The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)

 Nominal exchange rate between Australia and the United States dollar

The nominal exchange rate is the value at which a currency of one country exchanges with that of the other country. For instance the nominal exchange rate between the Australian and United States dollar is the value at which the Australian dollar exchanges with that of the United States. The nominal exchange is an economic indicator because it implies the strength of the local currency against other global currencies.

The higher the demand of the local currency, the higher the value meaning the economy is stronger.  As shown in the table below outlining the quarterly exchange rates between the Australian and United States dollar from the year 1996 to present it is evident that there is significant variation even though there is a gradual progressive decline in the value of the Australian dollar against the united stated dollar. This may imply a weakening of the Australian economy against that of the United States. 

Table 3: Exchange rate between Australian dollar and the US dollar

QuarterlyExchange rate between Australian dollar and the US dollar
Mar 19960.7793
Jun 19960.7890
Sep 19960.7924
Dec 19960.7965
Mar 19970.7865
Jun 19970.7455
Sep 19970.7198
Dec 19970.6527
Mar 19980.6634
Jun 19980.6135
Sep 19980.5945
Dec 19980.6139
Mar 19990.6293
Jun 19990.6596
Sep 19990.6536
Dec 19990.6538
Mar 20000.6055
Jun 20000.5986
Sep 20000.5433
Dec 20000.5540
Mar 20010.4890
Jun 20010.5075
Sep 20010.4923
Dec 20010.5106
Mar 20020.5316
Jun 20020.5648
Sep 20020.5435
Dec 20020.5662
Mar 20030.6036
Jun 20030.6674
Sep 20030.6801
Dec 20030.7500
Mar 20040.7589
Jun 20040.6889
Sep 20040.7147
Dec 20040.7790
Mar 20050.7719
Jun 20050.7636
Sep 20050.7615
Dec 20050.7337
Mar 20060.7159
Jun 20060.7433
Sep 20060.7480
Dec 20060.7913
Mar 20070.8070
Jun 20070.8487
Sep 20070.8827
Dec 20070.8816
Mar 20080.9180
Jun 20080.9626
Sep 20080.7996
Dec 20080.6928
Mar 20090.6873
Jun 20090.8114
Sep 20090.8801
Dec 20090.8969
Mar 20100.9159
Jun 20100.8523
Sep 20100.9667
Dec 20101.0163
Mar 20111.0334
Jun 20111.0739
Sep 20110.9781
Dec 20111.0156
Mar 20121.0402
Jun 20121.0191
Sep 20121.0404

Source: Reserve Bank of Australia

 Unemployment rate

The Australia’s unemployment rate which can be seasonally adjusted increased to 5.4 per cent in September, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) results that were released on October 11. However, there has also not been a widespread unemployment rate in Australia and as ABS reports in September there was an increase in the number of people employed from 14,500 to 11,511,900 as a result of full-time employment increase.

Moreover, there was also an increased in the unemployed people by 38,800 in September only. Therefore, the ABS monthly aggregate of the number of hours worked, it is evident that a considerable number of hours are used at work at work places in both part time and full time employment places.  In addition, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (2012) the labour fore participation rate which can be seasonally adjusted increased to 65.2 per cent in the month of September.

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Table 4: Australia unemployment rate

QuarterlyAustralia unemployment rate
Mar 19968.2
Jun 19968
Sep 19968.3
Dec 19968.4
Mar 19978.4
Jun 19978.2
Sep 19978.1
Dec 19977.9
Mar 19987.9
Jun 19987.7
Sep 19987.3
Dec 19987.1
Mar 19996.7
Jun 19997
Sep 19996.5
Dec 19996.6
Mar 20006.2
Jun 20006
Sep 20006.3
Dec 20006.5
Mar 20016.9
Jun 20016.8
Sep 20017
Dec 20016.4
Mar 20026.5
Jun 20026.3
Sep 20026.2
Dec 20026.1
Mar 20036.1
Jun 20035.8
Sep 20035.5
Dec 20035.4
Mar 20045.5
Jun 20045.4
Sep 20045.1
Dec 20045.2
Mar 20055
Jun 20055.1
Sep 20055.1
Dec 20054.9
Mar 20064.8
Jun 20064.7
Sep 20064.6
Dec 20064.4
Mar 20074.3
Jun 20074.2
Sep 20074.2
Dec 20074.1
Mar 20084.2
Jun 20084.3
Sep 20084.6
Dec 20085.7
Mar 20095.8
Jun 20095.7
Sep 20095.3
Dec 20095.4
Mar 20105.1
Jun 20105.1
Sep 20104.9
Dec 20104.9
Mar 20114.9
Jun 20115.2
Sep 20115.1
Dec 20115.2
Mar 20125.1
Jun 20125.1
Sep 20125.4

Source: Reserve Bank of Australia

 Labour productivity

Improved labour productivity usually leads to a strong gross domestic product (GDP) result. For instance, in the second quarter of 2011 there was a tremendous increase in the labour productivity in Australia by 1.5% leading to an adjustment of the inflation. Thus labour productivity can be described as generated output in a single hour of work which is being undertaken.

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According to Australian Bureau of Statistics (2012) from which the data used to generate graph below was obtained the month of June 2011 recorded a tremendous fell of national labour productivity which represented the second worst annual performance of the labour productivity since the year 1996. A high labour productivity implies increased production at reduced cost a phenomenon which is very appropriate for the economy growth.

Private final consumption

Private financial consumption and especially the private financial consumption expenditure have been widely used as an essential economy indicator. Thus, it can be used in forecasting where the economy is headed. 

Table 4: Private consumption expenditure volume index in Australia

PeriodPrivate consumption expenditure volume index in Australia
Seasonally adjusted

Source: The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)


In conclusion, the business cycle properties in addition to the judgemental forecasting approach utilised in this report can be effectively used to predict the future economy performance in a precise manner. 


Australian Bureau of Statistics, (2012), Australian Economic Indicators. Retrieved on 15th October 2012 from:  http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/mf/1350.0?opendocument#from-banner=LN

Edey, M.  “The Economy in Late 2008: Conditions and Prospects”, Australia & Japan Economic Outlook Conference 2008, Sydney – 19 November, http://www.rba.gov.au/Speeches/2008/sp_ag_191108.html

Evans, W. (2009), “We have revised our growth and rate forecast”, unpublished report by Westpac, 28 January.

Fisher, L., Otto, G. and G. Voss (1996), “Australian Business Cycle Facts”, Australian Economic Papers, 35(67), 300-320.

Reserve Bank of Australia, (2012), Statistical tables. Retrieved on 15th October 2012 from: http://www.rba.gov.au/statistics/tables/index.html#prices_inflation

Watson, M. “Macroeconomic Forecasting”, entry for The New Palgrave Dictionary, 2nd edition, edited by Lawrence Blume and Steven Durlauf.

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Worth of money Essay Paper

Worth of money
Worth of money

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Worth of money

Why is money worth more today than at a point in the future? If someone wants the use of your money, should you lend it or invest it in the company? What kinds of risk apply if you lend it? If you invest it? What moral issues are involved? 


In determining whether money is worth more today or in future the ‘time value of money’ concept must be considered which states  that money received today is worth a lot more that the same amount of money in the near future due to the ability of saving this amount and earning interest . Alignment of financial goals and the investment or lending policy is required in order to ensure the chosen option is beneficial in the long term (Advani, 2006). In determining whether to lend or invest money the risks and benefits of both options must be evaluated and the best option implemented.

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When lending money the lender expects to receive their principle amount and any interest that has arisen from the loan .The major risks possessed in lending may be a default of both the interest payments and refusal to pay even the principal amount .The terms of the lending arrangement ma not also be beneficial due to the interest charges agreed (Advani, 2006). 

Worth of money

Before making an investment it is important to evaluate the type of investment that best suits the funds available and the risks involved. The investment idea must match with the individual’s financial objectives. The risk associated with investing is a rapid drop in share prices if one has invested in the stock market a decrease in interest rates if one has invested in bonds and other forms of investment. 

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Worth of money

Financial goals of the individual should be the key consideration before they decide whether to lend or invest .A risk analysis is also important as it helps in making a sensible decision on the option that is more suitable. The best option should help the individual increase their asset value.


 Advani, A. (2006). Investors in your backyard: how to raise business capital from people you know Business Loans from Family & Friends: How to Ask, Make It Legal & Make It Work. Nolo.Indiana 

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Transactions cost economics

Transactions cost economics
Transactions cost economics

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Transactions cost economics

Firm v market, transactions cost economics (TCE), make-or-buy dilemma, vertical boundaries of the firm, vertical chain. 

Firms are important when contracts are incomplete, and firms make large specific investments. Firms are complex, a nexus of contracts where management take the view that vertical integration is useful for assuring input supply in an uncertain world. However coordination can be a problem in vertical chains yet management need to obtain economies of scale and size in production in order to be profitable. A critical task for management is to define the boundaries of the firm by determining what to make and what to buy.

Transaction Cost Economics and Vertical Boundaries of a Firm


The conditions under which businesses are being done are dramatically changing, with the continuous infrastructure improvement marked by communications, transportation and technologies, as well as revolutionizing the environment of business operations and stakeholders of business institutions as well as the interactions with suppliers, competitors, customers and other stakeholders (Williamson, 2002).   

Therefore, given the above changes in infrastructure, vertical integration turns out to be a logical option for firms due to the tremendous increase in market size and the demand of product thereby allowing high-volume production.   Hence, with the continuous telecommunications technologies and production advancements, one of the most significant firm’s strategic decisions is defining their boundaries under the circumstances which they consider using market rather than using internal organization in coordinating exchange (Milgrom & Roberts, 1992).

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This essay provides a keen examination of the key characteristics of Transaction Cost Economics (TCE), as well as analyzing the role that co-ordination plays in a vertical chain with the use of the issue tree. The essay has two parts where the first part starts by describing the TCE followed by the reviewing of the assumptions and the role of TCE. The second part provides a discussion of the role played by co-ordination in a vertical chain while the final part provides a conclusion of the essay. 

The key characteristics of transaction cost

Milgrom & Roberts (1992) defines transaction cost economics as the search, bargain, monitoring, enforcing as well as other cost not in direct relation to production of both services and goods. The use of the principle of TCE has been extensive and managers utilize it to determine the goods and services’ which are needed in a production process for make-or-buy decisions. Williamson (1981) states the assumptions of TCE as bounder rationality which referring to the rate as well as storage limits on the individual’s capacities for retrieving, storing and processing information without errors.  

However, the key characteristics of TCE would be discussed in terms of relationship specific assets, as well as the concept of fundamental transformation of rent, hold-up and quasi-rent (Milgrom & Roberts, 1992). Moreover, relationship specific assets are a set of investments or assets which are made towards supporting a given transaction particularly for improving efficiency of the given transaction whose redeployment to another transaction is not possible without incurring cost or affecting the asset productivity. Besanko, Dranove, Shanley & Schaefer (2010) described the key characteristics of CTE as well as the relationship specific asset which takes four forms discussed below:

1. Site specificity: These investments in assets can be referred to as the located side-by -side with the aim of taking advantage of efficiency in processing while making it economical to transport as well as minimizing inventory cost. Willamson (1981) provides an example of location of this as successive stations in check-by-jowl relation to each other in the attempts of economizing of the transportation and inventory expenses. 

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2. Physical Asset Specificity: Assets that are particularly tailored to a specific transaction in both physical properties and engineering. Willamson (1981) gives an example of a situation whereby specialized or unique resources are needed in a component.

3. Dedicated Assets: this is a situation whereby an investment is not necessarily profitable, in equipment and plant induced by a contract or promise of a buyer.

4. Human Asset Specificity: a set of know-how, skills as well as information acquired by a group of workers or workers who have valuable significance inside a particular transaction relationship compared to when it is outside of it. Milgrom & Roberts (1992) states that, this is likely to occur through a process of learning or by doing. Moreover, Besanko, Dranove, Shanley & Schaefer (2010) brings the fundamental transformation associated concepts of assets specific relationship as rent, holdup and quasi-rent problems. 

The vertical boundaries of a firm and the role of coordination

Generally, the flow of goods occurs along a vertical chain, that is, from the component parts and raw materials to manufacturing through distribution and finally retailing. Williamson (2002) observed that, in making decisions on firm boundaries, managers and entrepreneurs weigh the internal production benefits against the risks and costs of using markets.

For instance, in the oil and gas industry, the vertical chain of petroleum products is from crude oil which is the raw material being explored and produced, to storage and/or transportation through vessels and pipelines to a refineries for processing to various other petroleum products such as diesel, petrol, aviation fuel and other associated products. This also involves later storage and distribution of the finished petroleum products to various channels for retailing.

Irrespective of the position of a firm along the vertical chain, it has to define boundaries of the firm as well as the firm as a pool of experience, abilities and knowledge in addition to undertaking stages in which the application of the existing capabilities occur. In the attempts to resolve the associated make-or-buy decisions, there must be a comparison of the benefits as well as cost of using the market compared to performing the activities in house by the firm.

Besanko, Dranove, Shanley & Schaefer (2010) reiterates that a firm uses the market mainly due to the fact that the market firm are in most cases very efficient because of the exploitation of the learning curve and economics of scale as well as eliminating bureaucracy, and vertical integration of a firm makes links with products in adjacent stages that are within the value chain as well as internalizing exchanges taking place in open market.

Milgrom & Roberts (1992) states the cost incurred as a result of the use of the market as well as the reasons which makes the firm to embrace vertical integration such as the poor coordination cost between the vertical chain steps, asymmetric information and transaction cost. 

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Coordination is the management of the business activities dependencies (Besanko, Dranove, Shanley & Schaefer, 2010), and thereby make it a core aspect of the market utilization within the vertical chain. This implies that in coordination a set of two or more actors are involved in performing economic activities or exchanges in order to ensure goals are achieved within the vertical chain (Williamson, 2002).

Using the issue tree in Figure 5.4 pp144 Besanko as guide for the critical role played by coordination in the vertical chain and how firms make or buy decision; the use of the market firm as well as vertically integration are very essential.  Therefore, this implies that coordination arises in using the market, and the following of the issue tree would be achieved in using the market. 

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In this essay there has been identification of the key characteristics of TCE in terms of its relation asset specific as well as evaluating the assumptions of bounder opportunism and rationality. The discussion of the vertical chain as well as the essential role that coordination plays, have also been discussed in the essay.


Besanko, D., Dranove, D., Shanley, M. & Schaefer, S. (2010). Economics of strategy, 5th ed. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley& Sons.

Milgrom, P., & Roberts, J. (1992). Economics, Organization and Management. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.

Williamson, O. E. (1981). The Economics of Organization: The Transaction Cost ApproachThe American Journal of Sociology, 87(3), 548-577.

Williamson, O. E. (2002). The Theory of the Firm as Governance Structure: From Choice to Contract. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 16(3), 171-195.

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