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Economics - Essay Example

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Economics Introduction While many people think about economics as the study of money or purchasing, in reality the field of economics is much larger. Through a number of principles that have been developed over a number of years economics has come to investigate many of the phenomenon of the world…
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Download file to see previous pages One of the unique things I have witnessed is the nature of people who buy collectible such as sports cards or movie posters. This essay examines applied economic principles to the nature of collecting and selling collectibles. Analysis The nature of the collectible marketplace is a notable economic phenomenon. Generally people usually buy things because they have an easily identifiable reason. For instance, people buy groceries because they have to eat, and they buy shampoo because they have to clean their hair. This is different for collectibles where the reason people purchase certain things is oftentimes mysterious. People note that they collect oftentimes for enjoyment (Yumeka). But still, why would one person be willing to pay thousands of dollars for a piece of cardboard with Mickey Mantle’s picture on it, but not be willing to pay $10 dollars for just a piece of cardboard? To a large degree economic analysis offers answers to these questions of collectible prices. The overarching area of understanding collectibles is through Mankiw’s principles. One of the Mankiw’s economic principles is that, “Markets Are Usually a Good Way to Organize Economic Activity” (“Principles of Economics”). When considering collectible prices it’s clear they are a direct reflection of the market. As indicated above the reasons people desire to buy collectibles is out of a personal or sentimental connection to the object they are buying. For instance, it’s noted that people oftentimes baseball cards because they are seeking to reconnect with the memories they had during their childhood (Douglas). Certain types of card then take on greater personal and sentimental value for people. A Mickey Mantle baseball card will carry with it a lot more sentimental value than a baseball card by a less popular player. According to Mankiw then, the invisible hand of the market will guide the price of this card in relation to the amount the market is willing to pay for it. Another important consideration is Mankiw’s principle that “People Respond to Incentives” (“Principles of Economics”). Within the collectible market this is an important principle that influences price and collector involvement. While people oftentimes are drawn to buying collectibles because they have an interest in the specific item, there is also the hope for many people that the item they buy will increase in value. It’s noted that baseball cards have been considered a viable alternative to investing in stocks (Bullock). In these regards, the collectibles market is made complicated as people who buy the item out of personal interests and people who buy it out of economic interests clash and combine. Consider the nature of a very rare movie poster. While the poster may not be as attractive as a poster one could purchase from Wal-Mart, it still sells for a considerable amount more money. This is related to Mankiw’s principle of incentives in part because people recognize that there are some people who desire the poster for a personnel connection to it; however, they also recognize that since the poster is rare there is only a limited quantity. In this way people are willing to buy the poster because they will be able to sell it to others at a premium because the poster is not easily found. Conclusion In conclusion, this essay has examined the phenomenon of collectible sales in terms of two of ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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