The study investigated public authority regulations and the invisible hands of Adam Smith in a free market economy during the emergency a paradoxical relationship but the focus is to determine the place of public authority regulation of prices of goods during pandemic. It generated primary data by administering sets of questionnaires to selected firms and the data was analyzed using the Chi-square analysis. The two hypotheses formulated for the study was tested at a 5% level of significance. Results revealed that there were no price variations in pharmaceutical products and bakery companies’ products during the first wave of covid’19 pandemic in Nigeria. The findings show that because the restriction of movement did not affect essential commodities, and international borders were open for pharmaceutical goods and other essential products. Though discovery from the skeletal interviews conducted, showed an increase in demand for bakery products but no corresponding rise in prices. This movement restriction was affected by the firm order and directives of the government as carried out by COVID-19 task force. It is suggested that government should regulate the prices of commodities during emergencies to curtail artificial inflation.

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Published on 01/01/2023

DOI: https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.7943336
Licence: CC BY-NC-SA license

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