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Do you use facebook?

Photo of a smartphone with the Facebook application open
Economics is greatly impacted by how well information travels through society. Today, social media giants Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram are major forces on the information super highway. (Credit: Johan Larsson/Flickr)

Decisions ... decisions in the social media age

To post or not to post? Every day we are faced with a myriad of decisions, from what to have for breakfast, to which route to take to class, to the more complex—“Should I double major and add possibly another semester of study to my education?” Our response to these choices depends on the information we have available at any given moment; information economists call “imperfect” because we rarely have all the data we need to make perfect decisions. Despite the lack of perfect information, we still make hundreds of decisions a day.

And now, we have another avenue in which to gather information—social media. Outlets like Facebook and Twitter are altering the process by which we make choices, how we spend our time, which movies we see, which products we buy, and more. How many of you chose a university without checking out its Facebook page or Twitter stream first for information and feedback?

As you will see in this course, what happens in economics is affected by how well and how fast information is disseminated through a society, such as how quickly information travels through Facebook. “Economists love nothing better than when deep and liquid markets operate under conditions of perfect information,” says Jessica Irvine, National Economics Editor for News Corp Australia.

This leads us to the topic of this chapter, an introduction to the world of making decisions, processing information, and understanding behavior in markets —the world of economics. Each chapter in this book will start with a discussion about current (or sometimes past) events and revisit it at chapter’s end—to “bring home” the concepts in play.

Introduction

In this chapter, you will learn about:

  • What Is Economics, and Why Is It Important?
  • Microeconomics and Macroeconomics
  • How Economists Use Theories and Models to Understand Economic Issues
  • How Economies Can Be Organized: An Overview of Economic Systems

What is economics and why should you spend your time learning it? After all, there are other disciplines you could be studying, and other ways you could be spending your time. As the Bring it Home feature just mentioned, making choices is at the heart of what economists study, and your decision to take this course is as much as economic decision as anything else.

Economics is probably not what you think. It is not primarily about money or finance. It is not primarily about business. It is not mathematics. What is it then? It is both a subject area and a way of viewing the world.

Quiz PDF eBook: 
Real Estate
Download Real Estate Finance Quiz PDF eBook
24 Pages
2011
English US
Educational Materials



Sample Questions from the Real Estate Quiz

Question: Receiving a cash incentive for referring a buyer to a lender is a violation of

Choices:

the Fair Housing Act

Regulation Z

RESPA

the Truth-in-Lending Act

Question: Under the Truth-in-Lending Act, a consumer selling a home and buying another to live in has ___ days to change her mind

Choices:

0

1

3

5

Question: The process of inflating the sale price of a property with a fraudulent second mortgage is considered

Choices:

customer service

good selling skills

Mortgage fraud

a way to increase your commission

Question: The statement that reflects all the charges to both the buyer and seller in closing a residential real estate transaction is the

Choices:

disclosure of APR

Good Faith Agreement

HUD-1 Settlement Statement

Truth in Lending disclosure

Question: The relationship between the cost of money and the total amount financed is the

Choices:

APR

cost of goods sold

interest rate

prime rate

Question: The Real Estate Settlement and Procedures Act (RESPA) covers buying a

Choices:

first home

share of a shopping center

small restaurant

storage warehouse

Question: The amount a commercial bank must keep on deposit is known as

Choices:

equilibrium

monetary policy

reserve requirements

supply and demand

Question: The U.S. Treasury is responsible for ____ policy

Choices:

economic

fiscal

monetary

social

Question: The Real Estate Settlement and Procedures Act (RESPA) covers buying a

Choices:

first home

share of a shopping center

small restaurant

storage warehouse

Question: Selling your home due to a death in your immediate household most likely is a(n) ___ factor

Choices:

economic

governmental

physical

social

Question: The Federal Regulation prohibiting discrimination in the lending process is

Choices:

the Equal Credit Opportunity Act

the Fair Housing Act

redlining

the Truth in Lending At

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