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July 24, 2014 

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POTENTIAL GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT: The total output that the economy could produce if resources were at full employment. If the economy is at full employment (a 5 percent unemployment rate) then actual gross domestic product is equal to potential gross domestic product. Of course, if the unemployment rate is greater than 5 percent, then actual production is less potential production. By calculating potential gross domestic product, we can figure out exactly how far below this potential we are. This information then can be used by the pointy-headed government economists to recommend appropriate monetary or fiscal policies.

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Menu of Lessons
A. Introduction
  • Economic Basics
  • Economic Science
  • Scarcity
  • Production Possibilities

  • B. The Market
  • Demand
  • Supply
  • Market
  • Market Shocks

  • C. Behind Demand
  • Consumer Demand
  • Utility and Demand
  • Elasticity Basics
  • Elasticity and Demand

  • D. Behind Supply
  • The Firm
  • Production
  • Cost
  • Perfect Competition

  • E. Market Structures
  • Market Control
  • Monopoly
  • Monopolistic Competition
  • Oligopoly

  • F. Factor Markets
  • Factor Demand
  • Factor Supply
  • Factor Market Equilibrium

  • Jump to Macro Course
    Microeconomics

    Introductory Microeconomics is the study of the individuals, firms, markets, and industries, including the topics of consumer demand, production, cost, market structures, and factor markets.

    To access a given lesson, click on the corresponding link in the Menu of Lessons presented to the right.

    OPEN ECONOMY

    An economy that engages in international trade, especially one that exports goods and services to, and imports goods and services from, other economies that make up its foreign sector. It is "open" in the sense that goods and services flow into and out of the country. The alternative to an open economy is a closed economy, one that does not engage in international trade.

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    State of the ECONOMY

    U.S. Exports
    April 2014
    $193.3 billion
    Down 0.2% from March 2014: Econ. Stat. Admin.

    More Stats

    PURPLE SMARPHIN
    [What's This?]

    Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time wandering around the downtown area trying to buy either a pair of red and purple designer socks or a T-shirt commemorating Thor Heyerdahl's Pacific crossing aboard the Kon-Tiki. Be on the lookout for jovial bank tellers.
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    The average length of a "business lunch" is about 36 minutes.
    "The greatest use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it."

    -- William James, psychologist

    JIE
    Journal of Industrial Economics
    A PEDestrian's Guide
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