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CAPACITY UTILIZATION RATE: The ratio of actual production by business sector factories and other productive establishments in the economy to the potential production of these establishments. This rate indicates if our economy's factories are being used as effectively and as fully as possible. Like the unemployment rate, the capacity utilization rate measures how close our economy is to full employment. And like unemployment, this rate moves up and down over the course of a business cycle. During expansions, the rate is near 85 percent (considered full employment), and during contractions, it tends to be in the 70 percent range. In addition to an overall rate, there are also separate rates for manufacturing, mining, and utility industries.

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SERVICES: Activities that provide direct satisfaction of wants and needs without the production of tangible products or goods. Examples include information, entertainment, and education. This term service should be contrasted with the term good, which involves the satisfaction of wants and needs with tangible items. You're likely to see the plural combination of these two into a single phrase, "goods and services," to indicate the wide assortment of economic production from the economy's scarce resources.

     See also | goods | satisfaction | wants | needs | good | production | information | education | economy | scarce good | scarce resource | economic good |


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GRAPHICAL ANALYSIS

The process of investigating phenomena, especially economic phenomena, in a systematic manner using diagrams and graphs. Graphical analysis is commonly used to display abstract scientific relations, then to manipulate those relations to gain greater understanding of real world events. The market model is a primary example of graphical analysis.

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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time strolling through a department store hoping to buy either an electric coffee pot with automatic shutoff or a brown leather attache case. Be on the lookout for neighborhood pets, especially belligerent parrots.
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Cyrus McCormick not only invented the reaper for harvesting grain, he also invented the installment payment for selling his reaper.
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