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Subject: Business and Finance

Risk, Uncertainty and Profit

New Edition

Frank Knight

April 2016 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-004-9
Availability: In stock
330pp. ¦ $60 £45 €55

In Risk, Uncertainty and Profit, Frank Knight explored the riddle of profitability in a competitive market: profit should not be possible under competitive conditions, as the entry of new entrepreneurs would drive prices down and nullify margins, however evidence abounds of competitive yet profitable markets. To explain this seeming paradox, Knight uncovers the distinction between calculable risk and essentially unknowable uncertainty. Knight argued that risk stems from repeated events, which therefore allow probabilities to be calculated and factored into decisions, as for instance insurers do. Uncertainty however, stems from events that are unpredictable and as such cannot be prepared against. According to Knight, it is the interplay between risk and uncertainty on the one hand and competition between incumbent and new entrepreneurs that accounts for the enormous variation in profitability across firms and, for the same firms, over time. His insights on the sources of profit have been instrumental in shaping modern economic theory and to the development of a useful understanding of probability. This New Edition has been typeset with modern techniques and contains a newly compiled Index of important topics. It has been painstakingly proofread to ensure that it is free from errors and that the content is faithful to the original.

A Plan of the English Commerce

New Edition

Daniel Defoe

July 2014 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-001-8
Availability: In stock
187pp. ¦ $28 £20 €25

A Plan of the English Commerce is a rare piece of economic history covering the crucial period at the outset of the first Industrial Revolution and the early wave of globalization. Unlike other chroniclers of British economic development, Defoe was contemporary to and often had first-hand experience of important events. His account therefore offers an extraordinary vantage point, free from the distorting lens of modern theoretical explanations. An account rich in anecdotes and penetrating observations, Defoe’s work emphasizes neglected aspects of the world economy at the time, such as the interplay between industrial policy and international trade. Defoe argues that, under the Tudors, British industry developed under a heavily protected regime. Contrary to widespread belief, export controls, infant-industry subsidies, government-sponsored industrial espionage and aggressive technology transfer were routine. A Plan of the English Commerce is principal among Daniel Defoe’s works dealing with economic matters and remains of interest not only to economic historians but also to scholars concerned with economic development, international trade and industrial policy. This New Edition has been typeset with modern techniques and contains a newly compiled Index of important topics. Aiming for visual clarity and the minimization of redundancy, the New Edition drops the largely arbitrary italicization of words and applies a modern formatting style to the rudimentary tables found in the original. It has been painstakingly proofread to ensure that it is free from errors and that the content is faithful to the original, down to the unusually long chapter headings.

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