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Economic Terms

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Contractionary fiscal policy

Changes in taxation or expenditure in order to reduce demand in an economy

Below is a graph to breakdown the economic effects of a government running a contractionary fiscal policy in an AD/AS framework. This can be achieved through raising taxes, decreasing government expenditure or possibly both from the classical viewpoint. The immediate impact is that the AD curve shifts inwards creating a decelerating inflation rate.

It it important to note that the impact on economic growth depends on which sectors of the economy the fiscal policy was targeted. As a cut in spending towards productive sectors of the economy could cause the LRAS curve to inwardly shift. This is a key evaluation point to mention when dealing with fiscal policy.


A legal measure that can be used to protect most forms of written work as it either deters third parties from using and benefiting from its use or provides a legal remedy for recovering compensation from its unauthorised use.

Corporate Bonds

A corporate bond is a bond issued by a firm in order to raise financing for a variety of reasons such as to finance business expansion or to finance a takeover deal. These bonds usually relate to longer-term debt instruments and therefoe have a maturity of at least a year.

Below is a flowchart to illustrate the process and details behind the issuing of bonds.

Corporation tax

Corporation Tax is a tax on the taxable profits of limited companies and other organisations including clubs, societies, associations and other unincorporated bodies. The rate of tax is 20% rising to 23% for high levels of profits.

Cost push inflation

An increase in the price level due to an increase in production costs e.g. taxes, wages, utility or component prices. The cost increase will cause a negative shift in the SRAS curve. This causes prices to rise as costs push the supply curve up the aggregate demand curve.

Below is a diagram to show the impact of production costs rising over time, leading to a period of stagflation for the economy (inflation and negative growth). Generally it is any increase in factor of production cost that instigates the inward SRAS curve shift (increase in wages or higher prices for commodities such as oil). But there are also outside influences that could create this curve shift as well e.g. external inflation and higher taxes.

The factors that would create this type of inflationary pressure are:

  • Increases in labour costs
  • Increases in price of raw materials/commodities
  • Increases in the cost of imports (weaker currency)
  • Increases in the cost of capital

Because this type of inflation is brought about by production cost changes and not a stimulation in economic activity, it is perceived as the worst form of inflation an economy can experience when compared to consumption driven or investment driven inflation (demand pull inflation). This is because unlike with demand pull inflation, there is no opportunity for the LRAS curve to expand in the long-run to create disinflationary growth and return the economy back to full employment.

Cost push inflation can also lead to more severe changes in the price level if it is part of an inflationary spiral as shown below. This is created originally because of an increase in production costs moving the economy below the full employment and moving the economy to point B, as before. However, the rising costs of production can boost the disposable incomes of the owners of the factors of production (particularly if brought about by higher wages) which can result in an increase in spending and economic activity assuming ceteris paribus (depending on the marginal propensity to consume and save). This causes the AD curve to expand and moves the economy back to the full employment output level at point C. Crucially though, this leads to further inflationary pressures as the price level has now increased to P3. The spiral can then continue because if prices in the economy are increasing quickly, workers will bargain for higher wages to ensure in real terms they are made no worse off. This further increase in production costs for firms forces the SRAS curve inwards once again and a new macroeconomic equilibrium is settled at point D, stoking inflationary pressures even higher (P4). This process can continue and introduce crippling high inflation rates for a country.


An evaluation point to mention here is that if this type of inflation is sustained for a long period of time then it could damage the long term growth prospects of a country and in the process erode living standards.


Amounts of money spent on factors of production to produce goods and services.

Council tax

A tax imposed by councils to cover the cost of local services. The amount of tax levied depends on the relative value of the property occupied.

Coupon Payment

A periodic payment that the bondholder receives during the time between when the bond is issued and when it matures. An example of this is the fixed annual payments made by the Government to the holders of Gilt Edged Securities.


Is a contract that legally prescribes individuals tied to the contract to obey all the clauses and conditions contained in the legally binding contract. In financial markets, banks often draw up restrictive covenants when lending sums of money to businesses to reduce the probability of the business defaulting on that loan. It is called a restrictive covenant as the bank can prevent the business from paying out extra dividends to shareholders and taking more equity to finance investment plans until the loan has been paid back to the bank. These types of contracts are drawn up to reduce the problem of moral hazard.

Creative Destruction

A theory of economic innovation identified by Joseph Schumpeter, which describes the "process of industrial mutation that incessantly revolutionizes the economic structure from within, incessantly destroying the old one, incessantly creating a new one" i.e. new technology replaces old processes, similtaneously creating and destroying jobs and markets.

Below is an illustration of what creative innovation and invention leads to but also how it can offet these effects by destroying some exisintg markets and jobs that go with it. A modern example of this is the Uber taxi service putting pressure on traditional taxi service companies in the largest cities in the world.


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