Economics Dictionary of Arguments

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Author Item Summary Meta data
Mause I 153
Welfare State/Adam Smith: That the price on the market is welfare maximizing is the subject of the famous theorem of the invisible hand by Adam Smith (1723-1790). If all market participants behave selfishly (rationally), according to Smith the market coordinates the individual partial interests towards the welfare maximum. For the economic driving force here is not the "goodwill of the butcher, brewer and baker" (Smith [1776] 1978, (1)), but the respective self-interest of the market participants.
Invisible Hand/Smith: The individual concerns of each one are guided across the market "by an invisible hand to promote a purpose which he has no intention whatsoever to fulfil". (2)


1, A. Smith Der Wohlstand der Nationen. München 1978, p. 17.
2. Ibid. p. 371.


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

EconSmith I
Adam Smith
The Theory of Moral Sentiments London 2010

EconSmithV I
Vernon L. Smith
Rationality in Economics: Constructivist and Ecological Forms Cambridge 2009

Mause I
Karsten Mause
Christian Müller
Klaus Schubert,
Politik und Wirtschaft: Ein integratives Kompendium Wiesbaden 2018


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