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Marginal cost refers to the additional cost incurred by producing one more unit of a good or service. It essentially helps businesses understand the cost associated with increasing production by a single unit.

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Here's how you can find the marginal cost:


Marginal Cost (MC) = Change in Total Cost / Change in Quantity


Identify the total cost: This includes both fixed costs (costs that remain constant regardless of production level, like rent or salaries) and variable costs (costs that change with production level, like raw materials or labor).

Choose two different production levels: Select two quantities of the good or service you're analyzing.

Calculate the change in total cost: Subtract the total cost at the lower production level from the total cost at the higher production level.

Calculate the change in quantity: Subtract the lower production level from the higher production level.

Apply the formula: Divide the change in total cost by the change in quantity to obtain the marginal cost.


Imagine a bakery that produces bread. They currently produce 100 loaves with a total cost of $200. If they increase production to 120 loaves, the total cost becomes $240.

Change in total cost = $240 - $200 = $40

Change in quantity = 120 loaves - 100 loaves = 20 loaves

Marginal cost = $40 / 20 loaves = $2 per loaf

Therefore, in this example, the marginal cost of producing one additional loaf of bread is $2.

Additional points to remember:

Marginal cost can vary depending on the production level. In some cases, it might decrease due to economies of scale (efficiency gains with larger production).

Businesses often use marginal cost analysis to make informed decisions about production levels, pricing strategies, and resource allocation.
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