chapter  13
Competition
WithC. D. Foster
Pages 11

The nationalized road freight companies in the National Freight Corporation probably get, and give, as much competition as they would if they were denationalized. The big private firm can be inefficient and get away with it, just as the large public firm can; and there are nationalized industries which experience close competition and are unable to make monopoly profits. The sharp distinction between a ‘competitive’ industry and a monopoly has long been recognized to have been a false dichotomy to be found – usually not without qualification – in old economics textbooks, where a monopoly was often determined as an industry under single ownership. A casualty was the replacement of the sharp distinction between monopoly and competition by a continuum. A firm in steel might be more in competition with a substitute plastics product than with other steel firms. All the nationalized industries – except the Post Office – have some competition.