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April 14, 2024 

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ENERGY PRICES, AGGREGATE SUPPLY DETERMINANT: One of several specific aggregate supply determinants assumed constant when the aggregate supply curve is constructed, and that shifts the aggregate supply curve when it changes. An increase in the energy prices causes a decrease (leftward shift) of the aggregate supply curve. A decrease in the energy prices causes an increase (rightward shift) of the aggregate supply curve. Other notable aggregate supply determinants include technology, wages, and the capital stock. Energy prices fall under the resource price aggregate supply determinant.

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FEDERAL DEFICIT: An excess of federal government spending over tax collections. The federal deficit has been the subject of on-again, off-again debates among vote-seeking politicians and pointy-headed economists for a number of years. The main points of the debate are: (1) the potential crowding out of investment in capital goods, (2) the use of borrowed funds for either "consumption" or "investment" government purchases, and (3) the constraints imposed on fiscal policy. The jury of pointy-heads remains undecided on these issues.

     See also | government | tax | government purchases | budget deficit | budget | crowding out | fiscal policy | budget surplus | federal surplus |


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ASSUMPTIONS, CLASSICAL ECONOMICS

Classical economics, especially as directed toward macroeconomics, relies on three key assumptions--flexible prices, Say's law, and saving-investment equality. Flexible prices ensure that markets adjust to equilibrium and eliminate shortages and surpluses. Say's law states that supply creates its own demand and means that enough income is generated by production to purchase the resulting production. The saving-investment equality ensures that any income leaked from consumption into saving is replaced by an equal amount of investment. Although of questionable realism, these three assumptions imply that the economy would operate at full employment.

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