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PRICE CEILING: A legally established maximum price. The government is occasionally inclined to keep the price of one good or another from rising too high. Examples include apartments, gasoline, and natural gas. While the goal is invariably a noble one--like keeping stuff affordable for poor people--a price ceiling often does more harm than good. First, it usually creates a shortage, meaning that many of the buyers who being protected against high prices, can't even buy the good. Second, as a consequence of this shortage, a price ceiling is likely to generate a black market where the good is sold illegally above the price ceiling.

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Lesson 3: Scarcity | Unit 4: College Cost Page: 12 of 17

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An example of the opportunity cost of attending college.
  • Tuition, fees, textbooks, sliderule, etc. ($932.71 per semester) is an explicit opportunity cost.
  • The opportunity cost is all other things that you could have bought with this money-fuzzy dice, hot fudge sundaes, a used Ford Pinto, music CDs.
  • The tuition cost of your college degree is the added up over all semesters ($7,461,68).
However, the TOTAL COST actually goes well beyond this explicit $7,461,68 payment, since there are other costs that don't involve a money payment:
  • By attending school you have foregone alternative activities like working.
  • Unearned income, $15,000 per year, $60,000 for four years, is an extremely important implicit opportunity cost of a college education.
  • Implicit opportunity costs need not have a dollar value attached.
  • The foregone satisfaction from activities like watching television or sleeping, are also implicit opportunity costs.

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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 bought from countries. Imports are the counter to exports--goods produced by the domestic economy and purchased by the foreign sector. 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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PURPLE SMARPHIN
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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time flipping through mail order catalogs wanting to buy either a birthday gift for your father that doesn't look like every other birthday gift for your father or a green fountain pen. Be on the lookout for vindictive digital clocks with revenge on their minds.
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This isn't me! What am I?

A lump of pure gold the size of a matchbox can be flattened into a sheet the size of a tennis court!
"The greatest things ever done on Earth have been done little by little. "

-- William Jennings Bryan

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