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YIELD CURVE: A curve plotting the yields (or returns) on securities with different maturity lengths. The standard yield is for U.S. Treasury securities with lengths ranging from 90 days to 30 years. The five maturity lengths are usually 90 day, 180 day, 2 year, 5 year, 10 year, and 30 year. The shape and slope fo the yield curve indicates the state of the economy and what's likely to come. A normal yield curve has a slight positive slope, with slightly higher yields for longer maturity securities. A steep yield curve suggests the end of a contraction and beginning of an expansion. An inverted, or negatively sloped yield curve is the sign of an upcoming contraction.

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NATURAL RESOURCES: The naturally occurring resources that are naturally a part of our natural planet which are directed toward production--including land, water, wildlife, vegetation, air, climate, sunshine, mineral deposits, and soil nutrients. Natural resources provide the "stuff" that's used to produce all of the tangible products in the economy, including both consumer goods used for immediate satisfaction of wants and needs and capital used for further production.

     See also | resources | land | factors of production | labor | capital | entrepreneurship | pollution |


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TAX PROPORTIONALITY

The proportion of income paid in taxes at different levels of income. In some cases the proportion of income paid in taxes increases with income in other cases it decreases. And in still other cases, it remains the same. Tax proportionality comes in three alternatives -- proportional tax (different incomes pay the same proportion in tax), progressive tax (higher incomes pay a higher proportion in tax), and regressive (lower incomes pay a higher proportion in tax).

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