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DEPRESSION: An extended period--a decade or so--of restructuring and institutional change in an economy that's often marked by declining or stagnant growth. During this period, unemployment tends to be higher and inflation lower than a regular, run-of-the-mill recession. Moreover, a depression usually lasts in the range of ten years, often encompassing two or three separate shorter-run business cycles. The most noted depression in the U. S. economy was the Great Depression of the 1930s.

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CARDINAL UTILITY: A measure of utility, or satisfaction derived from the consumption of goods and services, that can be measured using an absolute scale. Cardinal utility exists if the utility derived from consumption is measurable in the same way that other physical characteristics--height and weight--are measured using a scale that is comparable between people. There is little or no evidence to suggest that such measurement is possible and is not even needed for modern consumer demand theory and indifference curve analysis. Cardinal utility, however, is often employed as a convenient teaching device for discussing such concepts as marginal utility and utility maximization.

     See also | utility | satisfaction | cardinal | second rule of subjectivity | indifference curve | consumer demand theory | ordinal | ordinal utility | quality of life | util | marginal utility | utility maximization |


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AGGREGATE DEMAND DECREASE, SHORT-RUN AGGREGATE MARKET

A shock to the short-run aggregate market caused by a decrease in aggregate demand, resulting in and illustrated by a leftward shift of the aggregate demand curve. A decrease in aggregate demand in the short-run aggregate market results in a decrease in the price level and a decrease in real production. The level of real production resulting from the shock can be greater or less than full-employment real production.

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