Рефераты. Темы для экзамена в Финансовой академии, 1 курс

Темы для экзамена в Финансовой академии, 1 курс

№1. Economic Goods and Services.

People begin to learn about economics when they are still very young. At

first they find that they want a lot of but they couldn’t bye everything.

There is a big gap between what they want and what they can have.

Than they discover that there are thousands of things they or their

parents could buy. Gradually, they settle into two major economic roles:

consumer and producer.

Consumer buy goods and services for personal use, not for resale. Consumer

goods are products, such as food, clothing, and cars, that satisfy people's

economic needs or wants. Some consumer goods, such as food, do not last a

long time. It’s perishable goods. Other goods, such as cars or VCRs, last

longer. Services are actions , such as haircutting, cleaning or teaching.

Services are used up at the time they are provided.

A producer makes the goods or provides the services that consumers use.

In order to produce something, a person must first have right resources.

Resources are the materials from which goods and services are made. There

are three kinds of resources: human (people), natural (raw materials), and

capital resources (capital, or the money or property). No economy has an

unlimited supply of resources. In other words , there is a scarcity of


The basic economic questions individuals and nations face are: What goods

and services will be produced? How will they be produced ? Who will get

them ? How much will be produced for now and how much for the future? The

answers to the questions depend on a country's human, natural, and capital

resources. Each country will answer 4 questions in a different way.

№2. Opportunity costs. Tradeoffs.

All production involves a cost. This cost is not counted simply in terms

of money but also in terms of resources used. In building a bridge, for

example, the real costs of the bridge are the human, capital, and natural

resources it consumes. To build a bridge requires the labour of many

people, including engineers and construction workers. The capital resources

these people use include a variety of tools and machines. Building a bridge

also requires natural resources.

Since resources are limited and human wants are unlimited, people and

societies must make choices about what they want most. Each choice involves

costs. The value of time, money, goods and services given up in making a

choice is called opportunity cost.

When people make a choice between two possible uses of their resources,

they are making a tradeoff between them.

Then, society will understand the true costs of making one decision rather

than another, and can make the decision that best fits its values and


How can the concepts of opportunity costs and tradeoffs be used to help

explain how the economy works? One way is to construct a simple plan of the

economy called an economic model. The simple plan helps economists to

analyse economic problems, seek solutions, and make comparisons between the

economic model and the real world.

One of the most important choices a society makes is between producing

capital goods and producing consumer goods. If a nation increases its

production of consumer goods, its people will live better lives today.

However, if a nation increases its production of capital goods, its people

may live better in the future.

Since every economic decision requires a choice, economics is a study of

tradeoffs. When you analyse each side of a tradeoff, you can make better


№11. Pricing policies.

There are two types of pricing policies: to concern price emphasis and to

emphasize low prices. The price emphasis charge appropriate prices, it

encourages sales, but the low prices don’t give extra services (some people

are interested in low prices and forget about extra services). The price

determines the number of sales. A good example of price emphasis is loss

leader pricing. It means that you chose one item and sell it at a very low

price. The consumer buys it and decides to buy something else, because he

gets some extra cash. There is also off-even pricing: it produces a

favorable psychological effect (79,99$).

And now something about de-emphasis: it concerns high quality expensive

items. Consumers don’t call attention to the price at all.

№3. Utility and prices.

Commodities of different kinds satisfy our wants in different ways. For

example: food, car, medicine, books satisfy very different wants. This

characteristic of satisfying a want is known in economics as “utility”.

Utility and usefulness are different things. For example: a submarine may

or may not be useful in time of peace, but it satisfy a want. Many nations

want submarine. Economists say that utility is “the relationship between a

consumer and a commodity”.

Utility varies between different people and different nations. For

example: somebody can be a vegetarian and he will be rate the utility of

vegetable very highly, while somebody who eats meat can rate the utility

of meat very highly. And about nations: mountain-republic like Switzerland

has little interest in submarines while maritime nations rate then very


Utility varies is also in relation of time. For example: in wartime the

utility of bombs and guns is high. Utility of the commodity is also depend

from quantity. If paper is freely available, people will not be so much

interested in buying too much of it. If there is an excess of paper, the

relative demand for paper will go down.

Let’s speak about prices.

Individual cannot change the prices of the commodities he wants. But

theoretical he can do it. For example, if he byes a lot of smth., let’s say

a lot of oil, or somebody discover a lot of oil, the price of oil will

change on the international market.

Now let’s speak about desire.

The consumer’s desire for a commodity tends to diminish (ди/миниш) as he

buys more units of it. Economists call this tendency the Low of Diminishing

Marginal Utility.

The interaction of buyers and sellers determines the prices for goods and

services. If the price is too low, a shortage will develop and if the price

is too high, a surplus will develop.

In a market economy, prices are the result of the needs of both buyers and

sellers. The sellers will supply more goods at higher prices. The buyer

will buy more goods at lower prices. Some prices is satisfactory to both

buyers and sellers. This price is called an equilibrium price.

№4 Supply and demand.

In a market economy, the actions of buyers and sellers set the prices of

goods and services. The price, in turn, determine what is produced, how it

is produced and who will bay it. Supply, the quantity of a product that

suppliers will provide, is the seller’s side of a market transaction.

Suppliers usually want the price that allows them to make the most money.

Demand, the quantity of a product consumer want, is a buyer’s side of a

market transaction. Buyers want the price that gives them the most value

for the least cost.

The items are sold one at a time, buyers mast quickly decided what price

they are willing to pay. Imagine now that you want to buy electric popcorn

maker on the auction. In order to get it you will have to outbid all the

others who want it. New popcorn maker costs about $14 and you decided you

are willing to go as high as $10 but not hire. At first you look into your

wallet. Only $5 is there. But you know that you have $15 on the desk at

home, and you know that your friend can lend you some money. And what

factors so far have influence you? You decision is the result of your

tastes, your available cash income, your wealth, your credit. You have also

had to think of the price of substitutes and the price of related items.

And on the auction you buy. The cost of popcorn maker is $9.

The popcorn demand schedule illustrates the low of demand, which indicates

that as the price of an item increases, a smaller quantity will be bought.

The degree to which changes in price cause changes in quantity demanded is

called elasticity of demand. There are two main kinds of the elasticity of

demand, it is highly elastic and inelastic. Highly elastic means that

demand changes when the price changes and inelastic means when people buy

nearly the same amount even though the price of smth. changes.

There are two main reasons for elasticity of demand. The first concerns

the relationship between income and the cost of the product. The second

reason why demand is elastic concerns whether or not substitute product is


№5. Markets and monopolies.

Whenever people who are willing to sell a commodity contact people willing

to buy it, a market for that commodity is created. Buyers and sellers meet

in person, or they may communicate by letter, by phone or through their

agents. In a perfect market there can be only one price for a given

commodity: the lowest price which sellers will accept and the highest which

consumers will pay. Competition influences the prices prevailing in the

market. Although in a perfect market competition is unrestricted and

sellers are numerous, free competition and large numbers of sellers are not

always available in the real world. In some markets there may only be one

seller or a very limited number of sellers. Such a situation is called a

"monopoly". It is possible to distinguish in practice four kinds of


State planning and central control of the economy often mean that a state

government has the monopoly of important goods and services. A different

kind of monopoly arises when a country has control over major natural

resources or important services. Such monopolies can be called natural

monopolies. Legal monopolies occur when the law of a country permits

certain producers, authors and inventors a full monopoly over the sale of

their own products. These types of monopoly are distinct from the sole

trading opportunities. This action is often called "cornering the market"

and is illegal in many countries.

In the market systems, competition answers the basic questions of what,

how, for whom, and how much. Competition among producers is for the highest

profits. Competition among consumers is for the best goods and services at

the lowest prices.

In a market economy three basic resources - land, labour and capital - are

bought and sold for the best price. Market for labour is constantly


№6. Economic Growth.

If you spent all the money you have now, you might be able to buy many of

the things you want. But you realise that by saving some now, you will save

more for the future. Societies also must save some of what they produce

today in order to have more for tomorrow. Every society must produce

capital goods as well as consumer goods to meet future economic needs. Long-

range economic growth depends on the continued production of capital goods

(goods used to produce other items).

Everyone who works contributes to the growth of capital resources. Suppose

you earn $72 a week. Your labour must be valuable enough to earn more than

just the money to cover your wages. Your labour may earn your company $100

a week. Since you are paid $72, you are helping the company to collect $28

a week. Some, or all, of this money can be used for capital resources.

Company can use this money to replace old tools and equipment for example.

The manager may decide to replace the old tools, hire more help, or expand

the shop.

In recent years, many people have argued that economic growth is a mixed

blessing. The advantages of growth are fairly clear. As people produce more

goods and services, the average standard of living goes up. Bat there is

some disadvantages: (1) use of natural resources that cannot be replaced,

(2) generation of waste products, (3) destruction of natural environments,

(4) uneven growth among different groups in society.

In the past, growth has allowed poor people to improve their economic

conditions. Nevertheless, continuing economic growth at the pace of today

may permanently damage our world, polluting air, land, and waters, and

using up natural resources. Growth, however, sometimes provides solution to

the problems.

№13 The cost of growth.

Long-range economic growth depends on producing capital goods. Everyone

who works contributes to the growth of capital resources. Your labor must

be valuable enough to earn more than just the money to cover your wages.

In recent years many people have argued that economic growth is a mixed

blessing. As people produce more goods and services the standard of living

goes up. Growth also keeps people employed and earning income. It provides

people with more leisure time, since they can decrease their working hours

without decreasing their income. But what are the disadvantages: use of

natural resources that can’t be replaced, generation of waste products,

destruction of natural environments, uneven growth among different groups

of society.

In the past, growth has allowed poor people to improve their economic


So, if our natural, human, capital resources are overused now to promote

economic growth, future growth may be much slower.

Growth, however, provides solutions to the problems.

№7. The nation's economy. GNP. Economic indicators.

Economists study different sides of the economy in different ways.

Microeconomics is the part of economics that analyses specific data

affecting an economy. Macroeconomics is the branch of economics that

analyses interrelationships among sectors of the economy.

Macroeconomists measure gross national product, or GNP, which is the value

of all goods and services produced for sale during one year. Three factors

limit the types of products counted.

First, only goods and services produced during a specific year are counted

Second, economists count a product or a service only in its final form.

Third, GNP includes only goods sold for the first time. When goods are

resold or transferred, no wealth is created.

One way in which economists measure GNP is the flow-of-product approach.

Using this method, they count all the money spent on goods and services to

determine total value. Each time a new product is sold, GNP increases.

Spending for products falls into four categories. The first, and the

largest, consumer spending, includes all expenditures of individuals for

final goods and services. Called personal consumption expenditures, this

category accounts for about 65 per cent of GNP. The second category

includes all spending of businesses for new capital goods. It accounts for

about 13 % of GNP. The third category includes spending of all levels of

government. Government purchases of goods and services account for about 21

per cent of GNP. The fourth category is net exports of goods and services,

about 1% of GNP.

Another way of determining GNP is the earnings-and-cost approach. This

method accounts for alt the money received for the production of goods and

services, it mea-sures receipts. Figuring gross national product by

counting what people receive requires calculating what the entire country

earns for the goods it makes and the services it performs. Included in

earnings are such things as business profits, wages and salaries, and

taxes' the government receives for its services. Also counted are interest

on deposits, money received as rent, and any other forms of income.

Business and government planners, investors, and consumers make decisions

based on their expectations of future economic performance. To help predict

expansion or contraction of the economy, government economists identified a

number of indicators. They fall into three categories: leading, coincident,

and lagging. Leading economic indicators rise or fall just before a major

change in economic activity. Coincident economic indicators change at about

the same time that shifts occur in general economic activity. Lagging

economic indicators rise or fall after a change in economic activity.

Following and interpreting all economic indicators is time-consuming. The

US Commerce Department, therefore, lists a composite index, or single

number, for each of the three sets of indicators. These composite indexes

are an average of all the indicators in each category.

№ 12 The rights of a customer and the responsibilities of a supplier.

When you buy something from a shop, you are making a contract. But you

want to make sure if this contract means that it's up to the shop to deal

with your complaints if the goods are not satisfactory. The first thing

that comes to your mind is that the goods must not be broken or damaged and

must work properly. The second thing that you find important is that the

goods must be as described - whether on the pack or by the salesman. It

makes you understand the third principle: The goods should be fit for their

purpose. This means the purpose for which most people buy those particular

goods. If you wanted something for a special purpose, you must have said

exactly what for.

Many people think that complaining about faulty goods or bad service is

never easy. Most of them dislike making a fuss. However, when you are

shopping, it is important to know your rights. You are quite sure that if

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