MONOPSONY….You know that a monopoly is when you only have one company in a market, right? The U.S. Postal Service, for example, has a monopoly in first class mail.

Well, a “monopsony” is when you have only one buyer in a market. The Danish national health system, for example, is the only buyer of pharmaceuticals in Denmark.

I don’t quite know why Atrios thinks you should know this, but now you do.

FUN FACT: The word is a combination of “mono,” meaning “single,” and “opsonia,” which means “a purchase of fish.”

UPDATE: Changed “Canada” to “Denmark.” Damn nitpicky commenters….

UPDATE 2: Henry Farrell has more, much more, on the etymology of “opsonia.”

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