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The classic idea of the just price is that it is a sum of money roughly equal to the real value of an object in an exchange. Modern economic theory gives considerable attention to the mechanisms of price-setting but tends to be agnostic with regard to the question of whether prices are or can be known to be fair or just. The question itself is often regarded by economists as a relic of a primitive precapitalist society. On a more practical level, though, the justice of prices is a very real concern for business, law, politics, and even religion, to say nothing about anyone who must attend to the affairs of daily life. While acknowledging the limitations of premodern economic theories, it is still the ...

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