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Home Theory of Demand Slope of the Demand Curve


Slope of the Demand Curve:


Demand Curve is Negatively Sloped:


The demand curve generally slopes downward from left to right. It has a negative slope because the two important variables price and quantity work in opposite direction. As the price of a commodity decreases, the quantity demanded increases over a specified period of time, and vice versa, other , things remaining constant.


The fundamental reasons for demand curve to slope downward are as follows:


(i) Law of diminishing marginal utility: The law of demand is based on the law of diminishing marginal utility. According to the cardinal utility approach, when a consumer purchases more units of a commodity, its marginal utility declines. The consumer, therefore, will purchase more units of that commodity only if its price falls. Thus a decrease in price brings about an increase, in demand. The demand curve, therefore, is downward sloping.


(ii) Income effect: Other things being equal, when the price of a commodity decreases, the real income or the purchasing power of the household increases. The consumer is now in a position to purchase more commodities with the same income. The demand for a commodity thus increases not only from the existing buyers but also from the new buyers who were earlier unable to purchase at higher price. When at a lower price, there is a greater demand for a commodity by the households, the

demand curve is bound to slope downward from left to right.


(iii) Substitution effect: The demand curve slopes downward from left to right also because of the substitution effect. For instance, the price of meat falls and the prices of other substitutes say poultry and beef remain constant. Then the households would prefer to purchase meat because it is now relatively cheaper. The increase in demand with a fall in the price of meat will move the demand curve downward from left to right.


(iv) Entry of new buyers: When the price of a commodity falls, its demand not only increases from the old buyers but the new buyers also enter the market. The combined result of the income and substitution effect is that demand extends, ceteris paribus, as the .price falls. The demand curve slopes downward from left to right.

Relevant Articles:

Meanings of Demand
Law of Demand
Individual's and Market Demand for a Commodity
Movement Vs Shifts of Demand Curve
Non Price Factors or Shifts Factors Causing Changes in Demand
Slope of the Demand Curve

Principles and Theories of Micro Economics
Definition and Explanation of Economics
Theory of Consumer Behavior
Indifference Curve Analysis of Consumer's Equilibrium
Theory of Demand
Theory of Supply
Elasticity of Demand
Elasticity of Supply
Equilibrium of Demand and Supply
Economic Resources
Scale of Production
Laws of Returns
Production Function
Cost Analysis
Various Revenue Concepts
Price and output Determination Under Perfect Competition
Price and Output Determination Under Monopoly
Price and Output Determination Under Monopolistic/Imperfect Competition
Theory of Factor Pricing OR Theory of Distribution
Principles and Theories of Macro Economics
National Income and Its Measurement
Principles of Public Finance
Public Revenue and Taxation
National Debt and Income Determination
Fiscal Policy
Determinants of the Level of National Income and Employment
Determination of National Income
Theories of Employment
Theory of International Trade
Balance of Payments
Commercial Policy
Development and Planning Economics
Introduction to Development Economics
Features of Developing Countries
Economic Development and Economic Growth
Theories of Under Development
Theories of Economic Growth
Agriculture and Economic Development
Monetary Economics and Public Finance

History of Money

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