Alternatives to the Multinational Enterprise by Mark Casson

By Mark Casson

"in the postwar international the most function of the multinational company has been the foreign diffusion of propriety expertise and managerial talents"

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There are two reasons why this may reduce efficiency. Firstly there may be increasing returns to scale in the marketclearing system. The typical system involves an infrastructure of channels of communication (post, telephones, etc) connecting administrative units which collect information, process it and store it. g. post and telephone services are hired at uniform parametric prices). On the other hand, while administrative units exhibit fewer cases of increasing returns, they are less easy to share with The Rationale of the Multinational Enterprise 53 other users.

2). Thus if the supply is voluntary then nothing will be forthcoming, and since the quantity traded cannot exceed the amount supplied, transactions will be zero and the outcome inefficient. This illustrates the general problem posed by increasing returns: the uniform price compatible with an efficient level of demand is incompatible with breaking-even in supply. One solution to this problem is to abandon uniform prices and to charge a different price for each unit traded; this is known as discriminatory pricing.

The ultimate use of information - like any other commodity is to satisfy consumer wants. g. a new or improved commodity. The ultimate source of informationlike any other commodity -is the utilisation of factors of production, particularly human capital. It is obvious that when contemplating the acquisition of information the researcher is in a state of uncertainty about the subject of the information. However it will be assumed throughout the analysis that he can foresee the costs of acquiring the information and the economic consequences of utilising it.

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