October, 2018

To Profit Maximize, Or Not To Profit Maximize

For Firms, This Is A Valid Question
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According to an influential argument in business ethics and economics, firms are normatively required to maximize their contributions to social welfare, and the way to do this is to maximize their profits. Against Michael Jensen's version of the argument, I argue that even if firms are required to maximize their social welfare contributions, they are not necessarily required to maximize their profits. I also consider and reply to Waheed Hussain's ‘personal sphere’ critique of Jensen. My distinct challenge to Jensen seems to me fatal to any view according to which firms are normatively required to maximize their profits.