Transactions and the Medium of Exchange

Understanding of basic economics is vital in today’s modern world. No matter which government we live under, politicians will have to make choices on how to spend tax revenue, who to give or not give subsidies too, and at times voters themselves may enact cost-regulations or laws against others via a simple majority vote. Knowing that production is a necessity of life, and that consumption can only arrive because of it will enable you to make rational decisions when faced with these situations.

To begin we look at the most basic of economics, pricing. How does a price come about? What came before pricing? Is living without money a feasible idea? How does a change in supply or demand, or in both affect the price of a good? The following posts will bring to you the information necessary for an answer, one that you can only arrive at yourself.

The Exchange of Goods

Transactions are common within our everyday life. We give up something in order to obtain something; a metal coin for a loaf of bread, volunteering for a few hours for personal satisfaction of doing good, or working for being able to consume a desired product. Exchange is the facilitation in all of this. Thus, transactions in an economy can be defined as the exchange of goods, labor, or services between two or more people.

Before an exchange can take place, a few factors are needed:

-Surplus of Production

-Desire or Need

-Ability to Exchange

Surplus of Production means any left over good or service that one has produced and cannot consume any further. A common example is a farmer of wheat, beyond what he can consume and store, any leftover wheat is a surplus crop. With this surplus crop, our farmer can then exchange it for something else. A surplus of production can also refer to services, which may not be as labor intensive, but still require time and energy to complete. Beyond what one person can do for himself, he can offer his services to another person.

Maybe the farmer needs new shoes, or he wants a new tool for his farming activities. His desire for products that he cannot produce or is not able to produce sufficiently will lead him to offer his surplus production to another person. The desire to fulfill needs and wants is common, but our resources are limited. Scarcity is always present, and as such our farmer must be willing to exchange what is necessary to provide him with his needs and desires.


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