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ACCUMULATION: The process of acquiring an item and adding that item to others previously acquired. In an economic context this most often refers to the accumulation of capital, as in the phrase "capital accumulation." However, it is also used in the context of consumer durable goods, financial assets, money, wealth, and a host of other "stock" variables. When applied to capital, the process of accumulation occurs through investment.

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CONSUMPTION: The use of resources, goods, or services to satisfy wants and needs. At the microeconomic level, consumption is primarily analyzed in the context of utility, demand and their importance to market exchanges. At the macroeconomic level, consumption is most important as expenditures by the household sector on gross domestic product, one of four aggregate expenditures (the other three being investment, government purchases, and net exports).

     See also | satisfaction | household sector | resources | goods | services | wants | needs | utility | demand | market | personal consumption expenditures | aggregate expenditures | investment expenditures | government purchases | net exports | production | pollution | materials balance | circular flow |


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SHORT-RUN AGGREGATE SUPPLY AND MARKET SUPPLY

The short-run aggregate supply curve, or SRAS curve, has similarities to, but differences from, the standard market supply curve. Both are positively sloped. Both relate price and quantity. However, the market supply curve is positively sloped due to the law of diminishing marginal returns and the short-run aggregate supply curve is positively-sloped due to inflexible prices, the pool of natural unemployment, and imbalances in real resource prices.

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