1.3 The Canadian Market Economy

Like most countries, Canada features a mixed market system much like its neighbour to the south: though the Canadian and U.S. economic systems are primarily free market systems, the federal government controls some basic services, such as the postal service and air traffic control. The Canadian economy also has some characteristics of a socialist system, such as providing social security retirement benefits to retired workers or free health care to its population. The free market system was adopted by Adam Smith in his book, The Wealth of Nations, published in 1776.  According to Smith, competition alone would ensure that consumers received the best products at the best prices. In the kind of competition he assumed, a seller who tries to charge more for his product than other sellers would not be able to find any buyers. A job-seeker who asks more than the going wage won’t be hired. Because the “invisible hand” of competition will make the market work effectively, there won’t be a need to regulate.


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Introduction to Management Copyright © by Kathleen Rodenburg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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