From Economics

The Economics in Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Introduction A childhood classic, Roald Dahl’s critically-acclaimed novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a familiar story to many of us. Its popularity is evident even in its adaptations into video games, musicals, plays and movies. However, within the chocolate-filled world of Willy Wonka, it is interesting to note the slight nods to Economics within…

Politics and Economics: Who is Speaking the Truth?

Let’s take a look at the minimum wage, which found its way back into the centre of the Singapore General Election 2020. Every Economics student can simply tell you that minimum wage refers to a legally established price floor for salaries. This means that employers will have to pay their employees a minimum amount of wages, and anything below is illegal. It was implemented in most countries, except notably Singapore and Scandinavian countries. 

How Priming Affects Consumer Behaviour

As modern consumers of the 21st century, we are often spoilt for choice with an endless variety of products from both physical stores and online shops, so much so that it has even created what is known as the ‘consumerist culture’. Burdened with a seemingly insatiable hunger for consumer goods, we are constantly on the…

Introduction to Behavioural Economics and the Health Industry

‘Standard economics assumes that we are rational… But, as the results presented in this book (and others) show, we are far less rational in our decision making… Our irrational behaviors are neither random nor senseless- they are systematic and predictable. We all make the same types of mistakes over and over, because of the basic…

The Everyday Applications of Nudge

The Law of Demand posits that the quantity demanded of a good or service has an inverse relationship with the price (i.e. the higher the price, the lower the quantity demanded). On the other hand, the Law of Supply teaches us that the price and quantity supplied share a direct, positive relationship. As Economics students, you might poke a hole in these two statements: I know, ‘ceteris paribus’. (For those who are not familiar with the subject, it is simply the assumption that all other factors are held constant.) Yet, even when so much precision and attention are paid to…

Income Inequality In Singapore

Income inequality in Singapore has worsened in recent times. The World Economic Report 2018 showed that the income share captured by the top 10% of income earners in Singapore increased from 32.1% in 1980 to 43.8% in 2014. Moreover, Singapore’s Gini coefficient after tax transfers (collection of taxes and redistribution of that wealth to the…

Behaviour Economics: Truth-telling

Reporting private information is common in most economics or non-economics activities, for instance, companies use advertisements to attract customers, a self-employed worker report her income to the tax authorities or doctors state a diagnosis. But there is a question that concerns us: does everyone choose to misreport their private information if this maximises their material…

The Mystery of the $0.50 Shoyuemi snack

I’ve noticed people buying packets of Shoyuemi snackfrom the drinks stall and I wonder why. The Shoyuemi seaweed snack – a crispy cracker made from soy sauce and vegetable essence – whilst delicious, is nowhere worth its price of $0.50. Visit a value-dollar shop and you would find that 30 packets of the same Shoyuemi…

Prisoner’s Dilemma and Economics

ECONOMICS E-COLUMNIST “The hazards of the generalised prisoner’s dilemma are removed by the match between the right and the good.” – John Rawls The prisoner’s dilemma is a standard example of a game analyzed in game theory that shows why two completely rational individuals might not cooperate, although it will result in an optimal outcome.…