zero-sum game

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Zero-sum game

A type of game wherein one player can gain only at the expense of another player.
Copyright © 2012, Campbell R. Harvey. All Rights Reserved.

Zero-Sum Game

A situation where the gain of one person equates to the loss of another person. That is, for every dollar one person makes in a zero sum transaction, another person loses a dollar. Not every transaction is a zero sum game; stock trading is not because some trades are mutually beneficial to the buyer and the seller. Options and commodity markets, however, are zero sum games because wealth cannot be created from these transactions, only shifted. See also: Wealth creation.
Farlex Financial Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All Rights Reserved

zero-sum game

A situation in which one person's gain must be matched by another person's loss. Without considering taxes and transaction costs, many types of investing, such as options and futures, are examples of zero-sum games.
Wall Street Words: An A to Z Guide to Investment Terms for Today's Investor by David L. Scott. Copyright © 2003 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved. All rights reserved.

zero-sum game

a situation in GAME

THEORY where game players compete for the given total pay-off, so that gains by one player are at the direct expense of the other player(s). For example, here two firms compete against each other in a mature market where total sales are not expanding, then each firm can increase its sales and market share only at the expense of its competitor.

Collins Dictionary of Economics, 4th ed. © C. Pass, B. Lowes, L. Davies 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Let's try not to get trapped in a cycle of bitter zero-sum policy battles.
"For China and the United States, cooperation leads to win-win outcomes, while confrontation can only lead to a lose-lose situation," the diplomatic mission stressed, calling the US "to abandon its outdated zero-sum thinking" and "engage in win-win cooperation."
The case of the Sewol ferry is a striking example of the zero-sum issue competition.
Asked to comment on mention of cross-border terrorism during his address to the US Congress, the spokesman refused to say what his intended audience was, but added that there was no zero-sum game here.
In a zero-sum game, product differentiation begins to wane, commoditization increases and there's competitive pressure on both pricing and underwriting to make concessions.
They do not see the negotiations as a zero-sum game but as a process that through constructive dialogue will lead to a win-win situation.
In a zero-sum game, one person's gain is another person's loss.
"The United States does not view Europe as a battleground between East and West, nor do we see the situation in Ukraine as a zero-sum game," Obama told the Dutch newspaper de Volkskrant in an interview published as he landed in Amsterdam.
| WASHINGTON, Feb 26 (KUNA) -- Secretary of State John Kerry, in an appearance with British Foreign Secretary William Hague, said the two allies are "deeply engaged in trying to help this extraordinary transition that is taking place in Ukraine." "Both of us are committed to doing our part to support the efforts of people in Ukraine who have spoken out on their own with passion for their ability to have a pluralistic, democratic future," Kerry said in remarks prior to their meeting for a "Discussion on Ending and Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Situations." "This is not a zero-sum game," Kerry said about developments in Ukraine.
Other chapters include the definition of a "game," two-person zero-sum games, linear programing, infinite games, multistage games, games with incomplete information, utility theory, two-person general-sum games, two-person cooperative games, n-person games, stable sets, indices of power, the bargaining set and related concepts, nonatomic games, games without side payments, and spatial games.
Tim Pethick, of Saga, said: "Employment is not a zero-sum game, and while the number of over-50s in work is rising faster than the other age groups, the over-50s have not been squeezing young people out of the job market."