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SCARCITY: A pervasive condition of human existence that exists because society has unlimited wants and needs, but limited resources used for their satisfaction. In other words, while we all want a bunch of stuff, we can't have everything that we want. In slightly different words, this scarcity problem means: (1) that there's never enough resources to produce everything that everyone would like produced; (2) that some people will have to do without some of the stuff that they want or need; (3) that doing one thing, producing one good, performing one activity, forces society to give up something else; and (4) that the same resources can not be used to produce two different goods at the same time. We live in a big, bad world of scarcity. This big, bad world of scarcity is what the study of economics is all about. That's why we usually subtitle scarcity: THE ECONOMIC PROBLEM.

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Lesson 8: Market Shocks | Unit 4: Double Shifts Page: 16 of 20

Topic: Less Demand and More Supply <=PAGE BACK | PAGE NEXT=>

Here we have demand decreasing (tastes change) and supply increasing (technological breakthrough).
  • A decrease in demand causes a decrease in both price and quantity.
  • An increase supply causes price to decrease and quantity to increase.
  • The combined effect is an obvious decrease in price but a questionable change in quantity.
  • At the new equilibrium the quantity is indeterminant.
  • If demand and supply curve shift in opposite directions, then quantity is indeterminant, but price is known.

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FIAT MONEY

A medium of exchange (money) with value in exchange, but little or no value in use. Modern paper currency, coins, and checkable deposits are fiat money. The value of fiat money comes from the public's general willingness to accept it in exchange for other goods. This willingness comes from the fact that EVERYONE is willing to accept fiat money in exchange, which largely depends on the public's confidence in the authority (usually government) issuing the fiat money. Fiat money is NOT valuable unto itself, but it is valuable for what it can buy. In the march toward economic complexity, fiat money emerged from commodity money, money with both value in exchange and value in use.

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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time strolling through a department store hoping to buy either an electric coffee pot with automatic shutoff or a brown leather attache case. Be on the lookout for neighborhood pets, especially belligerent parrots.
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In the late 1800s and early 1900s, almost 2 million children were employed as factory workers.
"Being defeated is only a temporary condition; giving up is what makes it permanent."

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