David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Business Ethics Quarterly 18 (3):347-378 (2008)
Price gouging occurs when, in the wake of an emergency, sellers of a certain necessary goods sharply raise their prices beyond the level needed to cover increased costs. Most people think that price gouging is immoral, and most states have laws rendering the practice a civil or criminal offense. The purpose of this paper is to explore some of the philosophic issues surrounding price gouging, and to argue that the common moral condemnation of it is largely mistaken. I make this argument in three steps, by rebutting three widely held beliefs about the ethics of price gouging: 1) that laws prohibiting price gouging are morally justified, 2) that price gouging is morally impermissible behavior, even if it ought not be illegal, and 3) that price gouging reflects poorly on the moral character of those who engage in it, even if the act itself is not morally impermissible.
|Keywords||Business Ethics Price Gouging Efficiency Exlpoitation Hayek Coercion|
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Citations of this work BETA
Benjamin Powell & Matt Zwolinski (2012). The Ethical and Economic Case Against Sweatshop Labor: A Critical Assessment. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 107 (4):449-472.
Juan Manuel Elegido (2009). The Just Price: Three Insights From the Salamanca School. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 90 (1):29 - 46.
Jeffrey Moriarty (2012). Justice in Compensation: A Defense. Business Ethics 21 (1):64-76.
Adam D. Bailey (2011). The Nonworseness Claim and the Moral Permissibility of Better-Than-Permissible Acts. Philosophia 39 (2):237-250.
Juan M. Elegido (2015). The Just Price as the Price Obtainable in an Open Market. Journal of Business Ethics 130 (3):557-572.
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