price support(redirected from Price Supports)
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Government intervention to set an artificially high price through the use of a price floor designed to aid producers.
Copyright © 2012, Campbell R. Harvey. All Rights Reserved.
A government subsidy that keeps the price for a good or service higher than it otherwise would be. For example, the government may set a price support for milk by mandating that suppliers may not accept anything less than the stated price. Price supports exist to protect the livelihoods of suppliers who cannot afford a price war or anything approaching one; many economists oppose price supports because they claim they interfere with competition and the free market.
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price supporta means of supporting the income of certain producers by administratively maintaining the PRICES of their products above market price. In many countries, price support systems are used specifically to assist the agricultural sector by ensuring an adequate level of total farm incomes. In Fig. 151, the EQUILIBRIUM MARKET PRICE is OA. If this price is considered too low to adequately remunerate farmers, the government will set a support price, say OB, at which it is prepared to buy up any unsold output. At the support price of OB, the government is then committed to acquiring the unsold output of CF at a total cost equal to the shaded area CFGH. The main problems with the price support method are that it penalizes consumers and results in wasteful overproduction. The price support method is used as the basis of the COMMON AGRICULTURAL POLICY of the European Union. Compare INCOME SUPPORT. See also AGRICULTURAL POLICY, BUFFER STOCK.
Collins Dictionary of Economics, 4th ed. © C. Pass, B. Lowes, L. Davies 2005