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January 22, 2018 

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CARTEL: A formal agreement between businesses in the same industry, usually on an international scale, to get market control, raise the market price, and otherwise act like a monopoly. A cartel tends to be unstable because the artificially high prices it sets gives each member of the cartel an incentive to "cheat" with a slightly lower price. When only one member of the cartel lowers the price, it can make oodles of profit by taking customers away from the other members. If they all cheat, the cartel falls apart. While cartels damage efficiency, they're power is often short-lived because of this cheating. Like collusion and other techniques of market control, cartels are illegal in the United States.

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BOND: The general term for a long-term loan in which a borrower agrees to pay a lender an interest rate (usually fixed) over the length of the loan and then repay the principal at the date of maturity. Bond maturities are usually 10 years or more, with 30 years quite common. Bonds are used by corporations and federal, state, and local governments to raise funds. Most bonds are negotiable, or can be readily traded prior to their maturity date. The price at which a bond sells depends on the original amount borrowed, the interest rate the bond pays, and comparable interest rates and returns on other investments in the economy.

     See also | interest rate | maturity | corporation | government | government security | corporate bond | premium | discount |


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CHECK CLEARING

The process in which reserves or funds are transferred among banks to settle the accounts of checks written on one account and deposited into another. Check clearing is the heart and sole of daily banking activity and the final step in the use of checkable deposits as the medium of exchange for conducting transactions in the economy. Check clearing is facilitated by central clearinghouses, including the Federal Reserve System and a number of private organizations. The check clearing process is also a key component of the money creation process.

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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time at a garage sale seeking to buy either a coffee cup commemorating the 2000 Olympics or a birthday gift for your grandmother. Be on the lookout for bottles of barbeque sauce that act TOO innocent.
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Ragnar Frisch and Jan Tinbergen were the 1st Nobel Prize winners in Economics in 1969.
"Now is the only time there is. Make your now wow, your minutes miracles, and your days pay. Your life will have been magnificently lived and invested, and when you die you will have made a difference."

-- Mark Victor Hansen

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