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February 8, 2023 

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X-M: The abbreviation for net exports, which is the difference between exports, goods and services produced by the domestic economy and purchased by the foreign sector, and imports, goods and services produced by the foreign sector and purchased by the domestic economy. While exports and imports important unto themselves, when combined into a single measure net exports captures the overall interaction between the foreign sector and the domestic economy. Arithmetically speaking, if exports exceed imports, then net exports are positive, and if imports exceed exports, the net exports are negative.

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ARBITRATION: Intervention of an impartial third party to settle disputes between two others. The decisions of this third party -- the arbitrator -- are legally binding, much like the ruling of a judge in a court of law. Arbitration is commonly used to interpret a collective bargaining agreement between unions and employers. Much like a judge (in some cases it is a judge) an arbitrator determines how a given union and employer conflict stacks up against the terms of existing agreement. Note that an arbitrator doesn't try to decide what's "best, "fair," or mutually agreeable to both sides -- as would be the case with mediation -- but only what's in line with the existing agreement.

     See also | labor union | collective bargaining | strike | mediation | lockout | labor | bilateral monopoly | labor agreement |


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FIAT MONEY

A medium of exchange (money) with value in exchange, but little or no value in use. Modern paper currency, coins, and checkable deposits are fiat money. The value of fiat money comes from the public's general willingness to accept it in exchange for other goods. This willingness comes from the fact that EVERYONE is willing to accept fiat money in exchange, which largely depends on the public's confidence in the authority (usually government) issuing the fiat money. Fiat money is NOT valuable unto itself, but it is valuable for what it can buy. In the march toward economic complexity, fiat money emerged from commodity money, money with both value in exchange and value in use.

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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time looking for a downtown retail store hoping to buy either several magazines on computer software or a T-shirt commemorating the second moon landing. Be on the lookout for letters from the Internal Revenue Service.
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