People and societies organize economic life to deal with the basic problems raised by scarcity and opportunity costs through economic systems. An economic system can be described as the collection of institutions, laws, activities, controlling values, and human motivations that collectively provide a framework for economic decision-making.
There are three basic approaches to economic decisions about resource allocation. One is based on tradition - that is, people generally repeat the decisions made at an earlier time or by an earlier generation. A second is based on command - that is, decisions are made largely by an authority such as a feudal lord or a government planning agency. The third is based on market price.
A market economy is a system of decentralized decision making in which individuals and business firms participate in the market through decisions that are reflected in the supply and demand and forges out of them an interrelated network of market prices that reflect the preferences of all the participants.
Market prices - and the changes in them - act as signals to producers, telling them what buyers want. Market prices also act as rationing devices by allocating productive resources and finished goods and services among members of society according to what buyers are willing and able to pay.
No recent real - world economy is or has been a pure form of a traditional, a command, or a decentralized market economy, every existing economy uses a different "mix" of mechanisms to respond to the basic economic decisions, and each has somewhat different institution, controlling values, and motivating forces at work that affect the operation of the economy.
Many economic systems have been undergoing fundamental changes during the last decades of the 20th century. The element of tradition has been more evident in the rural areas of the developing countries of Asia and Africa, yet even those rural areas have participated in elements of a market economy and/or a command economy. The element of command had been most evident in the former Soviet Union until the country collapsed and was replaced by 15 independent countries. China, which describes itself as a command economy, has many elements of traditional and market-price economies. The American economy is a mixed capitalistic economy, in which both government and private decisions are important, it is an economic system in which there is private ownership of capital, freedom of enterprise, competition, and reliance upon markets.
It should be noted that people of all societies, regardless of the type of economic system, engage in certain basic economic activities. These include producing, exchanging, and consuming goods and services, as well as saving and investing so that capital goods and human capital can be accumulated to increase output and productivity.
economic system экономическая система
resource allocation распределение ресурсов
traditional economy традиционная экономика
private ownership частная собственность
I. Сопоставьте каждое слово с соответствующим определением.
1. command economy a) an economy based on tradition
2. allocation b) right of possession
3. traditional economy с) clear to the eyes or mind
4. pure d) an economy where decisions are made by an
5. market economy e) distribution
6. evident f) an economy with elements of traditional and
7. mixed economy g) unmixed
8. ownership h) an economy without any government control
II. Заполните пропуски соответствующим по смыслу словом или словосочетанием.
1. A market system......
a) is an artifice of a historical means of setting up economies
b) facilitates the exchange of money and products
c) is necessary for the existence of firms
2. In.....economic system, a central authority makes the major production and
3. In a.....economic system, the major decisions about production and distribution are made in decentralized manner by individual households and business firms.
4. The US economy is referred to as a(n)......
a) centrally-planned economy
b) mixed economy
c) equitable economy
5. The element of tradition is more evident in......
c) Asia and Africa
d) the former Soviet Union
III. Переведите следующие словосочетания.
resource allocation, market price, supply and demand, basic economic decisions, to affect the operation of the economy, to undergo fundamental changes, rural areas, developing countries, private decisions, private ownership, to engage in economic activities, to inerease output and productivity.
IV. Напишите определения к следующим ключевым понятиям. Переведите их на русский язык.
1. An economic system
2. A command economy
3. A market economy
4. A mixed economy