
BALANCE OF TRADE: The difference between funds received by a country when exporting merchandise and the funds paid for importing merchandise. The balance of trade is a major part of the current accounts portion of the balance of payments. A balance of trade surplus results if exports exceed imports, commonly termed a favorable balance of trade, and a balance of trade deficit exists if imports exceed exports, analogously termed an unfavorable balance of trade. The "favorable" and "unfavorable" normative connotations attached to the balance of trade rests with the presumption that a nation is "better off" when it exports more than it imports, which is not necessarily true.
Visit the GLOSS*arama




CONSUMPTION FUNCTION: A mathematical relation between consumption and income by the household sector. The consumption function can be stated as an equation, usually a simple linear equation, or as a diagram designated as the consumption line. This function captures the consumptionincome relation that forms one of the key building blocks for Keynesian economics. The two key parameters of the consumption function are the intercept term, which indicates autonomous consumption, and the slope, which is the marginal propensity to consume and indicates induced consumption. Aggregate expenditures used in Keynesian economics are derived by adding investment, government purchases, and net exports to the consumption function. The consumption function is the starting point in the Keynesian economics analysis of equilibrium output determination. It captures the fundamental psychological law put forth by John Maynard Keynes that consumption expenditures by the household sector depend on income and than only a portion of additional income is used for consumption.This function is presented either as a mathematical equation, most often as a simple linear equation, or as the graphical consumption line. In either form, consumption is measured by consumption expenditures and income is measured as disposable income, national income, or occasionally gross domestic product. The primary purpose of the consumption function the basic consumptionincome relation for the household sector, which is the foundation of the aggregate expenditures line used in Keynesian economics. The consumption function makes it easy to divide consumption into two basic types. Autonomous consumption is the intercept term. Induced consumption is the slope. Of no small importance, the slope of the consumption function is also the marginal propensity to consume (MPC). First, The EquationThe consumption function can represented in a general form as:where: C is consumption expenditures, Y is income (national or disposable), and f is the notation for a generic, unspecified functional form.Depending on the analysis, the actual functional form of the equation can be linear, with a constant slope, or curvilinear, with a changing slope. The most common form is linear, such as the one presented here: where: C is consumption expenditures, Y is income (national or disposable), a is the intercept, and b is the slope.The two key parameters that characterize the consumption function are slope and intercept.  Slope: The slope of the consumption function (b) measures the change in consumption resulting from a change in income. If income changes by $1, then consumption changes by $b. This slope is generally assumed and empirically documented to be greater than zero, but less than one (0 < b < 1). It is conceptually identified as induced consumption and the marginal propensity to consume (MPC).
 Intercept: The intercept of the consumption function (a) measures the amount of consumption undertaken if income is zero. If income is zero, then consumption is $a. The intercept is generally assumed and empirically documented to be positive (0 < a). It is conceptually identified as autonomous consumption.
Then, The GraphConsumption Line 

 The consumption function is also commonly presented as a diagram or consumption line, such as the one presented in the exhibit to the right. This red line, labeled C in the exhibit is positively sloped, indicating that greater levels of income generate greater consumption expenditures by the household sector. The specific consumption function illustrated in this exhibit is:For reference, a black 45degree line is also presented in this exhibit. Because this line has a slope of one, it indicates the relative slope of the consumption line. The two primary characteristics of the consumption functionslope and interceptalso can be identified with the consumption line.  Slope: The slope of the consumption line presented here is positive, but less than one. In this case the slope is equal to 0.75. Click the [Slope] button to highlight.
 Intercept: The consumption line intersects the vertical axis at a positive value of $1 trillion. Click the [Intercept] button to highlight.
And Other FactorsThe consumption function captures the relation between consumption and income. However, income is not the only factor influencing consumption. where: C is consumption expenditures, Y is income (national or disposable), and now OF is specified as other factors affecting consumption. These other factors, officially referred to as consumption expenditures determinants, include a range of influences. Some of the more notable consumption determinants are consumer confidence, interest rates, and wealth.Consumer confidence is the general optimism or pessimism the household sector has about the state of the economy. More optimism means more consumption. Interest rates affect the cost of borrowing the funds used to purchase durable goods. Higher interest rates mean less consumption. Wealth is the financial and physical assets owned by the household sector. More financial wealth means more consumption, while more physical assets mean less consumption. These determinants cause consumption expenditures to change even though income does not change. Or another way of stating this, determinants cause consumption expenditures to change at every level of income. For a linear consumption function, this change is reflected by a change in the intercept term (a). For a consumption line, the change is seen as an upward or downward shift.
Recommended Citation:CONSUMPTION FUNCTION, AmosWEB Encyclonomic WEB*pedia, http://www.AmosWEB.com, AmosWEB LLC, 20002024. [Accessed: September 20, 2024]. Check Out These Related Terms...              Or For A Little Background...            And For Further Study...               
Search Again?
Back to the WEB*pedia



BROWN PRAGMATOX [What's This?]
Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time visiting every yard sale in a 30mile radius looking to buy either a Tshirt commemorating the 2000 Olympics or a genuine fake plastic Tiffany lamp. Be on the lookout for empty parking spaces that appear to be near the entrance to a store. Your Complete Scope
This isn't me! What am I?


During the American Revolution, the price of corn rose 10,000 percent, the price of wheat 14,000 percent, the price of flour 15,000 percent, and the price of beef 33,000 percent.


"Man is born to live, not to prepare for life. "  Boris Pasternak, writer


BNA Bureau of National Affairs


Tell us what you think about AmosWEB. Like what you see? Have suggestions for improvements? Let us know. Click the User Feedback link.
User Feedback

