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INDEX OF CONSUMER SENTIMENT: A measure of consumer attitudes, preferences, and expectations concerning the state of the economy and business-cycle conditions that is compiled each month by the Survey Research Center at the University of Michigan. The Index of Consumer Sentiment is one of two primary measures of consumer attitudes. The other is the Consumer Confidence Index developed by The Conference Board.

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BUSINESS CYCLE PHASES: The recurring, but irregular, pattern of business cycles can be divided into two basic phases -- expansion and contraction. An expansion is a period of increasing economic activity and a contraction is a period of declining economic activity. These two phases are marked by two transitions. The transition from expansion to contraction is termed a peak and the transition from contraction to expansion is termed a trough. The early portion of an expansion is often referred to as a recovery.

     See also | business cycle | expansion | contraction | recession | peak | trough | recovery | business cycle measurement |


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SHORTAGE

A condition in the market in which the quantity demanded is greater than the quantity supplied at the existing price. Because buyers are unable to buy as much of the good as they want, a shortage generally causes an increase in the market price, which then acts to restore equilibrium. A shortage, which also goes by the terms excess demand and sellers' market, is one of two basic states of disequilibrium for the market. The other is surplus.

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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time looking for a downtown retail store wanting to buy either a velvet painting of Elvis Presley or a wall poster commemorating yesterday. Be on the lookout for strangers with large satchels of used undergarments.
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Woodrow Wilson's portrait adorned the $100,000 bill that was removed from circulation in 1929. Woodrow Wilson was removed from circulation in 1924.
"We work to become, not to acquire. "

-- Elbert Hubbard, editor

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