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IMPORTS: Goods and services produced by the foreign sector and purchased by the domestic economy. In other words, imports are goods purchased from other countries. The United States, for example, buys a lot of the stuff produced within the boundaries of other countries, including bananas, coffee, cars, chocolate, computers, and, well, a lot of other products. Imports, together with exports, are the essence of foreign trade--goods and services that are traded among the citizens of different nations. Imports and exports are frequently combined into a single term, net exports (exports minus imports).

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Lesson Contents
Unit 1: Introduction
  • A Definition
  • Doing Production
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Capital
  • The Industry
  • Unit 1 Summary
  • Unit 2: Objectives
  • Staying Alive
  • Profit And Maximization
  • Real World Firms
  • Natural Selection
  • Unit 2 Summary
  • Unit 3: Legal Types
  • Types
  • Proprietorship
  • Partnership
  • Corporation
  • Other Options
  • Liability
  • Unit 3 Summary
  • Unit 4: U.S. Firms
  • Legal Types
  • By Industry
  • Unit 4 Summary
  • Unit 5: The Bigger Picture
  • Market Structures
  • Business Sector
  • Unit 5 Summary
  • Course Home
    The Firm

    This lesson investigates the nature of firms, especially those in the U.S. economy, including what they are, what they do, and how they operate. Paying careful attention to this lesson is no guaranteed that Duncan will end up with a multi-billion dollar "dot-com" business, but it won't hurt.

    • The first unit of this lesson, Organizing Production, gets us started with an overview of what firms are and their primary function in the economy -- which is production.
    • In the second unit, Objectives, we take a closer look at what motivates firms, especially the pursuit of profit.
    • The third unit, Legal Types, examines the most common legal forms of business firms, including proprietorships, partnerships, and corporations.
    • The fourth unit, U.S. Firms, investigates firms in the United States by the numbers -- including how many, what they are, what they produce.
    • The fifth and final unit, The Bigger Picture, then closes this lesson by discussing the role firms play in the grand economic scheme of things.

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    SHORT-RUN AGGREGATE SUPPLY

    The total (or aggregate) real production of final goods and services available in the domestic economy at a range of price levels, during a period of time in which some prices, especially wages, are rigid, inflexible, or otherwise in the process of adjusting. Short-run aggregate supply, commonly abbreviated SRAS, is one of two aggregate supply alternatives, distinguished by the degree of price flexibility. The other is long-run aggregate supply. Short-run aggregate supply is combined with aggregate demand in the short-run aggregate market analysis used to analyze business-cycle instability, unemployment, inflation, government stabilization policies, and related macroeconomic topics.

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