Defining Economic Terms:Scarcity, Trade-offs, and Opportunity Costs
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Hey guys, let's go ahead and define some key terms that will help us understand and answer the question, what is economics? So our first term here scarcity, It's the idea that in this world we have unlimited wants, but only limited resources to fulfill those wants, right? So for example, you know my wants, I want a new guitar. I love to travel shoot. I'd even love to go to the moon, but it's gonna be kind of tough. Right? What kind of resources do I have? I definitely don't have a spaceship, so that's not gonna be happening any time soon. I've got my time. So if I want to travel, yeah, I have the time for it. But what about the money? I don't have the money right now. I've got, well, I've got my empty bank account. At least I have that. Maybe I can put some money in it eventually. So that's the idea, right? We're gonna have to pick our battles here. We've only got limited resources and we've got all sorts of things that we're gonna want in this world. It kind of leads us to our next topic. Trade offs. It's the idea that we have to give up one thing to get something else. So for example, tonight I've been planning to go to the panthers game with my dad for a while here. Panthers, the florida panthers, that's our hockey team down here. Um and just last night, my friend calls me that there's a big party happening tonight and all my friends are gonna be there. Well, I'm gonna have to pick one or the other here, right? And I'm spoiler alert, I'm not gonna sell out my dad, so I'll go to the panthers game tonight. Um but it's not always two things that we're choosing between. Um what if it's your day off and you just want to go to the beach? Right? Maybe you got the day off, let's go to the beach. What are you giving up to go to the beach? Well, the opportunity to just stay home, right? You could have just stayed home instead, just relaxed at home. So, you know, there's always something you're giving up and that's the idea of an opportunity cost the value of the next best alternative to a choice, Right? So a good example is something you'll probably relate to going to college, right? When you go to college, um you're giving up the opportunity to get a full time job right away, right? Um Maybe some of you have part time jobs, I'm sure a lot of you are full time students too though. Uh the idea here is that when you go to college, yes, you have all the cost of college tuition fees, room and board books, Right? But there's also the opportunity cost of having gotten a job right away. So you're giving up all that money you could have already been making. So with these concepts, let's define economics
Definition of Economics:Micro vs. Macro
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Alright. So let's quickly discuss the difference here between micro economics and what we're studying here, macro economics. So economics in general, the definition is that it's a social science. So economics is science and it's focused on the decisions made by individuals, institutions and society under conditions of scarcity. So the whole idea is this key idea of scarcity, right? Where we have scarce resources that we have and how are we going to use that? The decisions that we make on an individual level and on a bigger levels as well. So in microeconomics, microeconomics course might teach you things like the choice that individuals and businesses make right choices of individuals and businesses. So things about how prices affect a market, right? For a certain product, the supply and demand of of a certain product or profit. How does a business maximize its profit or operations of the business? How many laborers to hire? Right. So these are all kind of micro ideas on a small scale of like what one business might do, what one person might do in one market, things like that. But here, in this course, we're talking about macro economics, which deals with what we're going to call the big picture, right? We're talking about bigger issues here and we're talking about studying the economy as a whole. We're talking about nations right now, national economics or global economics, things like that. So we're gonna deal with bigger ideas like recessions and what causes recessions, right? The causes of economic recessions and booms. We're gonna talk about inflation, right. How inflation affects interest rates and how it reflects affects the supply of money, right, bigger scale issues and unemployment, how unemployment affects and the understanding. And we're gonna understand the reasons why unemployment happens, the types of unemployment that there are and the effects that it has on the economy. All right. So here in this course, we're focusing here on macro economics, but you might always see, you know, a quick multiple choice, like does this specific issue deal with microeconomics and macroeconomics, something like that. So, it's good to know the difference between the two. Alright, let's go ahead and move on to the
The opportunity cost of going to a baseball game is
The face value of the ticket
The face value of the ticket plus the cost of snacks at the ballpark