Institute of Commercial Management | Qualification Subject

Economics For Business

Main Topics of Study

The Foundations of Economics

  • The economic problem: scarcity choice and opportunity cost
  • Production possibility and utility
  • Microeconomics and macroeconomics
  • Alternative economic systems
  • Growth and sustainable development

Microeconomics: The Theory of Price Determination

  • Demand
  • Supply
  • Market equilibrium, the price mechanism and market efficiency
  • Concept of elasticity
  • Indirect taxes, subsidies and price controls

Microeconomics: Costs and Revenues

  • Short and long run costs
  • The scale of production and economies of scale
  • Average, marginal and total revenues
  • Profit theory
  • Perfect competition: the short and long run
  • Productive and allocative efficiency

Microeconomics: Imperfect Markets

  • Monopoly, sources and profit maximisation
  • Comparison of perfect competition and monopoly
  • Advantages and disadvantages of monopoly
  • Monopolistic competition
  • Oligopoly, sources, collusive activity and non-price competition
  • Price discrimination

Microeconomics: Market Failure

  • Public goods and merit goods
  • Externalities
  • Sustainability and government response
  • Imperfect information and imperfect competition

Macroeconomics: The Level of Economic Activity

  • The circular flow of income, leakages and injections
  • The measurement of national income
  • Limitations of national income data
  • The business cycle
  • Aggregate demand and its components
  • Government policies affecting aggregate demand (fiscal and monetary)
  • Aggregate supply in the short and long run
  • Supply side policies

Macroeconomics: Equilibrium, Employment and Inflation

  • Short and long run equilibrium
  • The multiplier effect
  • The measurement and costs of unemployment
  • Causes of unemployment
  • Solutions to unemployment
  • Measurement and costs of inflation and deflation
  • Demand pull and cost push inflation
  • Reducing inflation
  • The inflation-unemployment trade off

Macroeconomics: Growth and Equity

  • Definition of economic growth
  • Consequences of growth
  • The distribution of national income
  • Taxation and income distribution

International Economics: Trade

  • Why countries trade
  • The principle of free trade. Absolute and comparative advantage
  • The world trade organisation
  • The arguments for and against protection
  • Types of protection
  • Economic integration and trade blocs
  • The terms of trade

International Economics International Monetary Issues

  • Exchange rate determination
  • Fixed, floating and managed exchange rate systems
  • The balance of payments, current, capital and financial account
  • Balance of payments and the exchange rate
  • Correcting a current account deficit

Development Economics

  • Sources of growth and economic development
  • Characteristics and diversity of developing countries
  • Measuring development
  • Domestic factors affecting development
  • International trade and development
  • The role of foreign direct investment
  • Aid, debt and development
  • Market aid and interventionist strategies

Maintaining and Developing Your Economic Skills

  • An analytical framework
  • Planning reading
  • Reading the industry literature

Example Candidate Response Booklet

Example Candidate Response (ECR) Booklets are a source of crucial information for Centres and Candidates as they use real candidate responses. We ask Senior Examiners to comment on five or more responses in terms of why the mark was awarded with commentary about how to improve the answer (if necessary).

Recommended Reading

Main Text:

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Economics – Course Companion, 2nd edition, 2012, Jocelyn Blink & Ian Dorton, Oxford University Press.

Indicative Text:

Alternative Text and Further Reading:

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Business Essentials, Economics, BPP Learning Media.

Essentials of Economics, 7th edition, John Sloman & Dean Garratt, Pearson.