ECO 500 Final project – Economic problem facing a company

Subject: General Questions / General General Questions
ECO 500 Journal Guidelines and Rubric
Overview: The final project for this course asks you to select and analyze a case study that presents an economic problem facing a company that operates within
a particular market structure.
You may encounter additional companies\case studies within your ECO 500 Case Study CoursePack. However, please disregard them and ONLY focus on the
following: American Airlines
Microsoft The American Airlines case addresses how a company manages revenue, the Microsoft case looks at how a company maintains market power, and the Heinz
case exemplifies how a company deals with competition. All three cases involve a company’s executives and managers looking for ways to increase profits. The
parent companies of Heinz and Beech-Nut entered into a merger agreement, which was blocked by the Federal Trade Commission. American Airlines attempted
to navigate the mind-numbing pricing structure that created the risk of being considered predatory. Microsoft’s anticompetitive actions in the browser market
resulted in legal problems.
For the final project, you will select one of these case studies and counsel the CEO on an alternate strategy. Imagine that the CEO has tasked you, the corporate
economist, with researching the issue and reporting on a possible plan of action. To begin this process, you must clearly understand the problem at hand and be
able to identify the root cause. Selecting the appropriate economic model to drive your analysis will be important in guiding your research.
Journals are private between the student and the instructor. Review this tutorial for information on creating a Blackboard journal entry.
Prompt: Compose a preliminary problem statement in which you identify the company you have selected to research and describe the problem at hand. In this
statement, you should: Identify and articulate the problem as presented in the case study, describing any relevant contextual factors that may influence it.
Use your background knowledge in economics and your critical thinking skills to deduce possible root cause(s) of the problem
Identify the appropriate economic model(s) that should drive the analysis of this problem. Is this a demand-side problem? Or is it a supply-side problem? In business scenarios such as this one, problem statements are needed to describe the problem in a concise way. These statements provide a clear and focused
analysis of objectives and offer a method that will be followed to find possible solutions. To help you craft your problem statement, see the following resource:
What Is an Effective Problem Statement? You may find it useful to gather information about the organization or company’s current initiatives and processes, general policies, and stated goals.
Information can generally be found in the organization’s main website, annual report and mission statement, and articles authored by the company or by
outside analysts. Additionally, you might consider accessing relevant company and market information on the following sites: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
This is a good source for costs information (i.e., producer price index [PPI]), labor market conditions (i.e., employment and unemployment by industry),
and prices of various goods (i.e., consumer price index [CPI]). Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval (EDGAR)
This is the database compiled by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). U.S. Census Bureau
This site houses useful business and industry data programs. Once your journal response is submitted, you will receive instructor feedback that will ensure that you are on the right track and will help guide your research for
the upcoming milestone assessments. Rubric
Guidelines for Submission: Your journal response should be submitted as a 3- to 5-page (including title and references pages) Microsoft Word document with
double spacing, 12-point Times New Roman font, and one-inch margins. You should use current APA style guidelines for your citations and reference list. Note
that at least three outside information sources are required for this assignment (these may include both the case study and the company website itself).
Instructor Feedback: This activity uses an integrated rubric in Blackboard. Students can view instructor feedback in the Grade Center. For more information,
review these instructions.
Critical Elements
Articulation of Problem Proficient (100%)
Accurately articulates the problem and
comprehensively identifies the relevant
economic factors that have influence Application: Root Cause Critically deduces a possible root cause of
the problem, offering a logical and clear
Identifies an appropriate economic model
and offers reasoned justification for the
choice Application: Economic
Model Needs Improvement (75%)
Articulates the problem but explanation
may reflect inaccuracies or make fallacious
or improper conclusions; relevant economic
factors may be incorrectly identified
Partially or unclearly clarifies the root cause
of the problem; explanation needs support Not Evident (0%)
Does not adequately articulate the problem
or identify relevant contextual factors that
may have influence Value
30 Does not deduce the root cause of the
problem 30 Identifies an economic model but model
may not be suitable to the problem at hand
or is not adequately justified Does not identify an economic model for
the problem 30 Articulation of Response Submission has no major errors related to
citations, grammar, spelling, syntax, or
organization Submission has major errors related to
citations, grammar, spelling, syntax, or
organization that negatively impact
readability and articulation of main ideas Submission has critical errors related to
citations, grammar, spelling, syntax, or
organization that prevent understanding of
Total 10 100%

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