Q. Explain cost output relationship with reference to
a. Total fixed cost and output
b. Total variable cost and output
c. .Total cost and output
A. Total fixed cost and output:
TFC refers to total money expenses incurred on fixed inputs like plant, machinery, tools & equipments in the short run. Total fixed cost corresponds to the fixed inputs in the short run production function. TFC remains the same at all levels of output in the short run. It is the same when output is nil. It indicates that whatever may be the quantity of output, whether 1 to 6 units, TFC remains constant. The TFC curve is horizontal and parallel to OX-axis, showing that it is constant regardless of output per unit of time. TFC starts from a point on Y-axis indicating that the total fixed cost will be incurred even if the output is zero. In our example, Rs 360=00 is TFC. It is obtained by summing up the product or quantities of the fixed factors multiplied by their respective unit price.
B. Total variable cost and output:
TVC refers to total money expenses incurred on the variable factor inputs like raw materials, power, fuel, water, transport and communication etc, in the short run. Total variable cost corresponds to variable inputs in the short run production function. It is obtained by summing up the production of quantities of variable inputs multiplied by their prices. The formula to calculate TVC is as follows. TVC = TC-TFC. TVC = f (Q) i.e. TVC is an increasing function of output. In other words TVC varies with output. It is nil, if there is no production. Thus, it is a direct cost of output. TVC rises sharply in the beginning, gradually in the middle and sharply at the end in accordance with the law of variable proportion. The law of variable proportion explains that in the beginning to obtain a given quantity of output, relative variation in variable factors-needed are in less proportion, but after a point when the diminishing returns operate, variable factors are to be employed in a larger proportion to increase the same level of output.
TVC curve slope upwards from left to right. TVC curve rises as output is expanded. When output is Zero, TVC also will be zero. Hence, the TVC curve starts from the origin.
C. Total cost and output:
The total cost refers to the aggregate money expenditure incurred by a firm to produce a given quantity of output. The total cost is measured in relation to the production function by multiplying the factor prices with their quantities. TC = f (Q) which means that the T.C. varies with the output. Theoretically speaking TC includes all kinds of money costs, both explicit and implicit cost. Normal profit is included in the total cost as it is an implicit cost. It includes fixed as well as variable costs. Hence, TC = TFC +TVC.
TC varies in the same proportion as TVC. In other words, a variation in TC is the result of variation in TVC since TFC is always constant in the short run.
The total cost curve is rising upwards from left to right. In our example the TC curve starts from Rs. 360-00 because even if there is no output, TFC is a positive amount. TC and TVC have same shape because an increase in output increases them both by the same amount since TFC is constant. TC curve is derived by adding up vertically the TVC and TFC curves. The vertical distance between TVC curve and TC curve is equal to TFC and is constant throughout because TFC is constant.