Unlike most costs discussed in economics, an opportunity cost doesn't necessarily involve money. The opportunity cost of any action is simply the next best alternative to that action: What you would have done if you didn't make the choice that you made?
與經濟學中討論的大多數成本不同,機會成本并不一定涉及金錢。任何行動的機會成本都只是該行動的次優方案:如果你沒有做出這個選擇,你會怎么做?

The notion of opportunity cost is critical to the idea that the true cost of anything is the sum of all the things that you have to give up.
所謂機會成本,其實說的是你必須為之放棄的一切以及所要付出的代價。

Opportunity cost considers only the next best alternative to an action, not the entire set of alternatives, and takes into account all of the differences between the two choices.
機會成本只考慮行動的下一個最佳選擇,而不是全部備選方案,并且要考慮到兩個選擇之間的所有差異。

We actually deal with the concept of opportunity cost every day. For example, options for a day off work might include going to the movies, staying home to watch a baseball game, or going out to coffee with friends. Choosing to go to the movies means the opportunity cost of that action is the second choice.
事實上,我們每天都在與機會成本的概念打交道。例如,休息一天的選擇可能包括去看電影,待在家里看棒球比賽,或者和朋友出去喝咖啡。選擇去看電影意味著這個行動的機會成本是第二選擇。

Explicit Versus Implicit Opportunity Costs
顯性和隱性機會成本

Generally, making choices includes two types of cost: explicit and implicit. Explicit costs are monetary expenses, while implicit costs are intangible and therefore hard to account for.?
一般來說,成本有兩種類型:顯性和隱性。顯性成本是貨幣支出,但是隱性成本是無形的,因此很難解釋。

In some cases, such as weekend plans, the notion of opportunity cost includes only these forgone alternatives, or implicit costs.?
在某些情況下,比如周末計劃,機會成本的概念只包括這些被放棄了的選擇,或者隱性成本。

But in others, such as a business's profit maximization, opportunity cost refers to the difference in the total of this type of implicit cost and the more typical explicit monetary cost between the first choice and the next best alternative.
但在其他方面,例如企業的利潤最大化,機會成本指的是這種隱性成本的總和與最優和次優選擇之間更典型的顯性貨幣成本的差異。

Analyzing Opportunity Costs
機會成本分析

The concept of opportunity cost is particularly important because, in economics, almost all business costs include some quantification of opportunity cost.?
機會成本的概念尤為重要,因為在經濟學中,幾乎所有的商業成本都包括機會成本的一些量化。

To make decisions, we must consider benefits and costs, and we often do this through marginal analysis.?
做決策時,我們必須考慮收益和成本,通常我們可以通過邊際分析來做到這一點。

Firms maximize profits by weighing marginal revenue against marginal cost.?
企業通過權衡邊際收入和邊際成本來實現利潤最大化。

What will make the most money when considering the operating costs??
在考慮運營成本的情況下,做什么能賺到最多的錢?

The opportunity cost of an investment would involve the difference between the return on the chosen investment and the return on the other investment.
一項投資的機會成本包括所選投資項目的回報和其他投資項目的回報之間的差額。

Likewise, individuals weigh personal opportunity costs in everyday life, and these often include as many implicit costs as explicit.?
同樣地,個人在日常生活中也要權衡個人機會成本,這些成本通常包括與顯性成本一樣多的隱性成本。

For example, weighing job offers includes analyzing more perks than just wages.?
例如,衡量工作機會時要多分析福利,而不僅僅是工資。

A higher-paying job isn't always the chosen option because when you factor in benefits like health care, time off, location, work duties, and happiness, a lower-paying job might be a better fit.?
高薪工作并不總是最好的,因為當你考慮到諸如醫療保險、休假、工作地點、工作職責和幸福感等福利時,低薪工作可能更適合你。

In this scenario, the difference in wages would be part of the opportunity cost, but not all of it.?
在這種情況下,工資的差異將是機會成本的一部分,但不是全部。

Likewise, working additional hours at a job offers more in wages earned but comes at the expense of more time to do things outside of work, which is an opportunity cost of employment.
同樣地,一份工作加班可以帶來更多的工資收入,但是卻要花費更多的時間去做工作以外的事情,這是就業的機會成本。

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(翻譯:雅蘭)