How did the economic system used in the former Soviet Union differ from a market system? 

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The communist system used in the Soviet Union was the polar opposite of a market system.  

A market system is based on the idea of personal, economic freedom. People have the right to own private property and they have the right to do more or less whatever they want with that property.  People do what they want with their property in hopes of making money and becoming wealthy.

In a communist system, none of this is true.  There is no significant private property.  People do not control the economic decisions made in the society.  Instead, the government controls the economy.  It owns all significant property and it makes plans to determine what products will be made in the economy.  The profit motive does not exist.

In these ways, the communist system that existed in the Soviet Union is the exact opposite of a market system.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial