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DISINTERMEDIATION: A general deterioration in the profitability of a bank because it pays high interest rates on short-term borrowing, but earns relatively low interest rates on long-term lending. This was a big, BIG problem for savings and loans (S&Ls) during the 1970s and ultimately caused many of them to fail in the 1980s. S&Ls were designed (by law) to make long-term (30-year) home loans to consumers, but to get the funds for these loans using standard savings accounts. When inflation and interest rates shot up in the 1970s, S&Ls found it necessary to pay savers higher rates to get the funds. But, they still had a bunch of home loans--with low interest rates--that were 15, 20, or 25 years from being repaid. For several years, S&Ls received 6 percent on many of their loans, but paid out something like 12 percent. This gradually eroded their profitability until many were forced to close their doors.

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PRODUCTION FUNCTION:

A mathematical relation between the production of a good or service and the inputs used. A production function captures the general relation between total production and one or more inputs. The standard production function includes labor and capital as the inputs. However, a production function is general enough that any number of inputs can be included
A production function provides an abstract mathematical representation of the relation between the production of a good and the inputs used. A production function is usually expressed in this general form:

Q=f(L, K)

where: Q = quantity of production or output, L = quantity of labor input, and K = quantity of capital input. The letter "f" indicates a generic, as of yet unspecified, functional equation.

The analysis of short-run production is commonly performed at the introductory level with simple tables and graphs. These are useful abstraction methods for isolating and analyzing key aspects of short-run production. However, mathematical equations are another, often more powerful, method of abstract analysis. This is where the production function comes into play. Because a mathematical equation can extend beyond the two dimensions of a graph, it is possible to consider relations beyond just that for a variable input and total production.

If the production function takes the form of a specific equation (such as Q = 5L + 10K + 2LK), then a total product curve relating total product and the variable input can be plotted. However, to do so, one of the two inputs (L or K) must be designated as a variable input and one designated as a fixed input. For most types of production, labor is more readily changed than capital, so L is generally the variable input and K is usually the fixed input. A short-run total product curve can then be derived by "fixing" K at a particular value, then plotting the values of Q for alternative values of L.

While a great deal of economic insight into short-run production decisions of a firm and market supply curves can be analyzed with a simple graph, when economists begin using mathematical equations, such as the production function, Q = f(L, K), the possibilities are almost unlimited. A wide assortment of additional input variables can be added to this equation to make it, not only more sophisticated, but also more revealing.

For example, the effect of education and human capital on production can be seen by adding the educational attainment of workers as another input variable. In addition, the alternative impact on production of different types of capital, such as fixed structures and equipment can be identified by separating capital into two variables. In addition, to identify how public infrastructure, like highways and streets, affects production, then a variable for this input can be added to the production function.

<= PRODUCTION COSTPRODUCTION INPUTS =>


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PRODUCTION FUNCTION, AmosWEB Encyclonomic WEB*pedia, http://www.AmosWEB.com, AmosWEB LLC, 2000-2018. [Accessed: September 22, 2018].


Check Out These Related Terms...

     | short-run production analysis | production inputs | production time periods | total product | marginal product | average product | law of diminishing marginal returns | marginal returns | production stages |


Or For A Little Background...

     | production | production cost | abstraction | variables | labor | capital | law of supply | supply | principle | business | economic analysis | marginal analysis | factors of production | microeconomics |


And For Further Study...

     | long-run production analysis | division of labor | production possibilities | total product and marginal product | total product and average product | average product and marginal product | total cost | marginal cost | average cost |


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