The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd

Capital Utilization

  • Roger Betancourt
Reference work entry


Utilization of capital can take place through variations in the duration of working time, given intensity, or through variations in the intensity of working time, given duration, or both. This article focuses on the economic factors determining duration and discusses the issues affecting and affected by variations in intensity. The latter can take the form of variations in speed or in the use of inputs that are complements to capital relative to some maximum or optimum. We provide a historical perspective, discuss modern theory, its main applications and links to the issues of speed and capacity, and identify important implications.


Agency costs Business cycles Capacity utilization Capital utilization Compensating differentials Depreciation Duality Duration Dynamic factor demand models Elasticity of substitution Exploitation General equilibrium Incomplete contracts Leontief production function Market imperfections Marshall, A. Marx, K. H. Monitoring Non-convexity Obsolescence Overtime Partial equilibrium Production function Shift work Shift differential Solow residual Speed Specific-factors models Taxation of corporate profits Technical change Transaction costs Two-sector models Wear and tear Work day of capital Work day of labour 

JEL Classifications

D2 D24 E22 E23 L23 J81 
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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roger Betancourt
    • 1
  1. 1.