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ZERO BOND: Also termed a zero coupon bond, a bond that does not pay interest, in which the return is generated by the difference between the purchase price and the face value paid at maturity. Because they do not pay interest, zero bonds are sold at a discount. For example, a $10,000 zero bond that matures in one year, would generate a 10% return if it sold at a discount of $9,000.

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RESERVE REQUIREMENTS: Rules by the Federal Reserve System governing the amount of bank reserves that banks must keep to back up their deposits. Legal reserve requirements came about because banks that practice fractional-reserve banking are sometimes inclined to make too many interest-paying loans and neglect to keep enough reserves on hand to pay their depositors. In principle, the Fed can alter reserve requirements to control the money supply. In practice, however, the Fed prefers to use open market operations or the discount rate.

     See also | Federal Reserve System | bank reserves | reserves | fractional-reserve banking | bank panic | money supply | open market operations | discount rate | monetary policy | Federal Open Market Committee | required reserves |


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FACTOR DEMAND

The willingness and ability of productive activities (usually, business firms) to hire or employ factors of production. Factor demand relates factor price and factor quantity, specifically, it is the range of factor quantities that are demanded at a range of factor prices. This is one half of the factor market. The other half is factor supply. The factors of production subject to factor demand include any and all of the four scarce resources--labor, capital, land, and entrepreneurship. However, because labor involves human beings directly, it is the factor that tends to receive the most scrutiny and analysis.

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