March 18, 2018 

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A POSTERIORI: A conclusion reached through logical reasoning based on facts and observations about the real world. This notion is closely related to the scientific verification of hypotheses and the identification of principles. A similar sounding, but opposite term is a prior, which is a unverified presumption made before an analysis is undertaken. For example, in the study of economics of crime you might assume, a priori, that people are basically "good", and conclude, a posteriori, that people are more likely to commit crimes when the threat of capture and conviction is lower.

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LOAN: In general, a transaction in which a legal claim is exchanged for money. The legal claim is typically a contract or promissory note stipulating when and how the money will be repaid. The lender gives up the money and receives the legal claim. The borrower gives up the legal claim and receives the money. A loan can be either an asset or a liability, depending on who does the borrowing and who does the lending. To the borrower, a loan is a liability, something that is owed. The borrower must pay off the loan or repurchase the legal claim. However, to the lender, a loan is an asset, something that is owned. In fact, loans represent a significant part of a bank's assets.

     See also | asset | liability | financial markets | bank | financial intermediary | deposit |

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A social science that studies the allocation of limited resources used to produce the goods and services that satisfy unlimited consumer wants and needs. Economics is one of several social sciences (others are sociology, political science, and anthropology) which applies the scientific method to human behavior. The distinguishing feature of economics is a concern with the fundamental problem of scarcity--unlimited wants and needs and limited resources. Economics is commonly divided into two branches--macroeconomics and microeconomics.

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