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BUSINESS CYCLES: The recurring expansions and contractions of the national economy (usually measured by real gross domestic product). A complete cycle typically lasts from three to five years, but could last ten years or more. It is divided into four phases -- expansion, peak, contraction, and trough. Unemployment inevitably rises during contractions and inflation tends to worsen during expansions. To avoid the inflation and unemployment problems of business cycles, the federal government frequently undertakes various fiscal and monetary policies.

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AAUP: The abbreviation for American Association of University Professors, which is an association of university and college faculty established in 1915 to protect academic freedom. The AAUP is the closest thing university faculty have to a labor union. While it does engage in some collective bargaining functions with specific universities, similar to traditional labor unions, its primary function is to ensure that faculty maintain intellectual or academic freedom from political of social pressures.

     See also | labor union | craft union | collective bargaining |


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MACROECONOMICS

The branch of economics that studies the entire economy, especially such topics as aggregate production, unemployment, inflation, and business cycles. It can be thought of as the study of the economic forest, as compared to microeconomics, which is study of the economic trees.

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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time at a going out of business sale seeking to buy either a flower arrangement in a coffee cup for your father or a how-to book on meeting people. Be on the lookout for vindictive digital clocks with revenge on their minds.
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Al Capone's business card said he was a used furniture dealer.
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-- Mohandas Gandhi, activist

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