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Dumping

  • Date Submitted: 11/10/2010 02:05 AM
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***Dumping (pricing policy)***

In economics, "dumping" can refer to any kind of predatory pricing. However, the word is now generally used only in the context of international trade law, where dumping is defined as the act of a manufacturer in one country exporting a product to another country at a price which is either below the price it charges in its home market or is below its costs of production. The term has a negative connotation, but advocates of free markets see "dumping" as beneficial for consumers and believe that protectionism to prevent it would have net negative consequences. Advocates for workers and laborers however, believe that safeguarding businesses against predatory practices, such as dumping, help alleviate some of the harsher consequences of free trade between economies at different stages of development (protectionism). The Bolkestein directive, for example, was accused in Europe of being a form of "social dumping," as it favored competition between workers, as exemplified by the Polish Plumber stereotype. While there are very few examples of a national scale dumping that succeeded in producing a national-level monopoly, there are several examples of dumping that produced a monopoly in regional markets for certain industries. Ron Chenow points to the example of regional oil monopolies in Titan : The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. where Rockefeller receives a message from Colonel Thompson outlining an approved strategy where oil in one market, Cincinnati, would be sold at or below cost to drive competition's profits down and force them to exit the market. In another area where other independent businesses were already driven out, namely in Chicago, prices would be increased by a quarter.

A standard technical definition of dumping is the act of charging a lower price for a good in a foreign market than one charges for the same good in a domestic market. This is often referred to as selling at less than "fair value." Under the World...

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