The Economist (reference below) defines perfect competition as the most competitive market imaginable, and adds:
“Perfect competition is rare and may not even exist. It is so competitive that any individual buyer or seller has a negligible impact on the market price. Products are homogeneous. Information is perfect. Everybody is a price taker. Firms earn only normal profit, the bare minimum profit necessary to keep them in business. If firms earn more than that (excess profits) the absence of barriers to entry means that other firms will enter the market and drive the price level down until there are only normal profits to be made. Output will be maximised and price minimised. Contrast with monopolistic competition, oligopoly and, above all, monopoly.”
Atlas topic, subject, and course
The Economist, Perfect competition, Economics A-Z, at http://www.economist.com/economics-a-to-z/p#node-21529574, accessed 7 May 2016.
Page created by: Ian Clark, last modified 7 May 2016.