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Thanks especially for the ref. [OPE-L:2420] to Murray's book; I'm aware of
Webber/Rigby's F&M influences, tho' I haven't seen the book you mention.
Webber and Rigby, being geographers, are particularly keen on spatial
dispersion of profit rates.
In this connection, see also Paul S. Plummer et al. (1998) "Modelling
spatial price competition: marxian versus neo-classical approaches", Annals
of the American Association of Geographers, Vol. 88 pp. 575-594.
Apart from also citing F&M, they argue that profit-rate maximisation is a
more rational maximand than the total mass of profit in the case where firms
are spatially separated (hence, presumably, in all cases).
One of the co-authors of the above is Eric Sheppard, author, with T. Barnes,
of "The capitalist space economy: geographical analysis after Ricardo, Marx
and Sraffa" (London, Unwin, 1990).
PS: I'll come back later on your well-taken points about individual firms'
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