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December 22, 2014 

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Santa? Real or Not?

Real.
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MARGINAL COST CURVE: A curve that graphically represents the relation between marginal cost incurred by a firm in the short-run product of a good or service and the quantity of output produced. This curve is constructed to capture the relation between marginal cost and the level of output, holding other variables, like technology and resource prices, constant. The marginal cost curve is U-shaped. Marginal cost is relatively high at small quantities of output, then as production increases, declines, reaches a minimum value, then rises. This shape of the marginal cost curve is directly attributable to increasing, then decreasing marginal returns (and the law of diminishing marginal returns).

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RATIONAL ABSTENTION

The decision NOT to do something (such as vote in an election) because the cost of taking the action is more than the expected benefit. The rational decision to refrain from an endeavor is a straightforward application of utility maximization and along with the related notion of rational ignorance, is a source of voter apathy and government inefficiency.

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"I feel sorry for the person who canžt get genuinely excited about his work. Not only will he never be satisfied, but he will never achieve anything worthwhile. "

-- Walter Chrysler, automaker

The Depths Of DEPRESSION

In the discussion of recession we see that one of the problems confronting both pedestrians and the economy is stepping in an occasional pothole. These potholes are usually small and do little damage. Every now and then, however, our economy falls face first into one humdinger of pothole that's big enough to swallow the better part of a marching band. Rather than a mere recessionary pothole, these are best thought of as depressionary canyons. The Great Depression of the 1930s was the most memorable depressionary canyon on record for the good old U. S. of A. The question we need to ponder over the next few pages is: Are there any more depressionary canyons like the 1930s lurking along the economic pavement?
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APLS

State of the ECONOMY

Federal Discount Rate
November 7, 2014
0.75%
Steady

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PURPLE SMARPHIN
[What's This?]

Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time browsing about a thrift store hoping to buy either a coffee table shaped like the state of Florida or storage boxes for your summer clothes. Be on the lookout for florescent light bulbs that hum folk songs from the sixties.
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During the American Revolution, the price of corn rose 10,000 percent, the price of wheat 14,000 percent, the price of flour 15,000 percent, and the price of beef 33,000 percent.
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