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LAGGING ECONOMIC INDICATOR: One of seven economic statistics that tend to move up or down a few months after the expansions and contractions of the business cycle. These statistics paint a pretty clear picture of what the economy was doing a few months back. Lagging economic indicators lag the turning points of the aggregate economy by 3-12 months. After a contraction begins, lagging indicators decline 3 to 12 months later. And 3 to 12 months after a expansion begins, lagging indicators rise.

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CAPITAL ACCOUNT DEFICIT: An imbalance in a nation's balance of payments capital account in which payments made by the country for purchasing foreign assets exceed payments received by the country for selling domestic assets. In other words, investment by the domestic economy in foreign assets is less than foreign investment in domestic assets. This is generally not a desireable situation for a domestic economy. However, in the wacky world of international economics, a capital account deficit is often balanced by a current account surplus, which is generally considered a desireable situation. If, however, the current account does not balance out the capital account, then a capital account deficit contributes to a balance of payments deficit.

     See also | capital account | balance of payments | balance of payments deficit | capital account surplus | current account | current account surplus | domestic | foreign | international economics | international finance | foreign exchange |


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MONEY FUNCTIONS

Any item used as money in an economy automatically takes on four basic functions: (1) medium of exchange, (2) unit of account, (3) store of value, and (4) standard of deferred payment. While "buying and selling" means that money is THE medium of exchange, and by far THE most important function of money, money also performs unit of account, store of value, and standard of deferred payment functions.

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