"Examine the assertion that firms in reality are neither wiling nor able to maximise profits.
The main objective for a firm is to survive, and this will ensure their status within that market. In order for firms to continue to be in any market, they must have AR=AC. For a firm to go on, and make normal profit will mean they are being more efficient with their capital, by ensuring both opportunity and operating costs are covered. Therefore, they will be using their next best use of their resources to ensure they are making healthy profit. It is the minimum the amount a firm must receive to carry on production. However, some firms can also surpass this, and make abnormal profit. Profits exceed the amount a firm must receive to carry on production. Also known as supernormal profit. If abnormal profits persist in an industry this will tend to attract new firms in, supply will increase, prices will fall and normal profits will be restored. If there are barriers to entry then abnormal profits may persist in the long-run. Profit is maximised at a level of output where the difference between total revenue and total cost is greatest. In order for a firm to be at its profit maximising level of output, MC = MR. .
In a monopolistic market structure there are non-homogenous products, so elasticity of demand is higher. Therefore a firm will tend to maximise its profits in the long run due to this. However, in the long run, a firm will not earn abnormal profits as there is freedom to entry to the market and because of this, a company can enter the market and produce at a lower cost therefore shifting the demand of the firm to move lower. In this market, AC = AR because competitive pressures mean that a firm cannot either make a loss or earn abnormal profits. Within monopolistic competition there are many substitutes and therefore raising prices to increase revenue will simply result in consumers switching to an alternative.