http://www.engvid.com Let’s talk business! Today you’ll learn vocabulary that will help you to read and speak about the economy. We will look at common words used to discuss economic matters, such as GDP, stagnation, fiscal, and more. These words and expressions will help you read financial news articles and follow economic reports on television and online. After the lesson, take the quiz and try to practice these words by discussing economic matters in English with your co-workers and friends. Feel free to ask me questions in the comments section on engVid. http://www.engvid.com/english-vocabulary-how-to-talk-about-the-economy/
Hi. Welcome back to www.engvid.com. I’m Adam. Today’s lesson, we’re going to look at business English. We’re going to talk about the economy. Now, we’re not going to get into too much detail. We’re not going to get into economic theories, etc. What we’re going to look at is some vocabulary that will help you read financial articles and newspapers, or online, or watch financial broadcasts on TV; CNN, Money Matters, etc., things like that. So, we’re going to look at all these words.
We’re going to start with “GDP” because everything somehow relates to “GDP – gross domestic product”. What is this? This is the total value, the total monetary value of goods and services produced within a country. So everything that the country produces from toilet paper to airplanes, and services from massage to heart surgery, all the money that’s made from these goods and services together adds up to the GDP. So, when we’re talking about GDP, we’re going to refer back to this expression when we’re talking about some of these other words.
So, first, let’s look at “fiscal”. “Fiscal” basically means anything to do with money, anything to do with financial matters, especially when we’re talking about taxes. Okay? So, when… The most common thing you’ll hear is “fiscal year”. So when we’re talking about a company’s fiscal year, we’re talking about it’s the beginning of its tax year to the end of its tax year. In some countries, everybody matches this to January to December; in other countries, you’re allowed… Your fiscal year starts when you start your business, and then one year later is the end of your fiscal year. It’s easier to match it to the calendar year, but…
A “quarter”. Now, you’re going to always hear about prices, and stocks, and values going up or down over the last quarter or over the last two quarters. What is a “quarter”? It’s basically three months. So if you’re talking about the first quarter of the year, you’re talking about January, February, March. That’s your first quarter. Your next three months, second quarter. Four quarters makes one year.
“Currency”. I think everybody knows this word, but just in case, this is the money that is used in a country or a region. This is the monetary value that is used for exchanges, trades, investments, etc. In Canada, we use the Canadian dollar. In the U.S., they use the American dollar. Euro in Europe, etc.
A “budget”. A “budget” or “to budget”, it can be a noun or a verb, means to make a plan on how to spend a certain amount of money. So, for example, a government has this much money that they need to spend, or they have a plan that they want to spend this much money. Now, they want to spend a million dollars. I’m being very simple, here; I’m not going to get into big numbers. They need to spend a million dollars to provide all the services that they need and to buy all the materials that they need to import, etc. If they are running on a deficit, that means that they need to spend more money than they have. They have to spend on things to bring in or to run the country, but they don’t have. So if I need to spend a million dollars but I only make the revenues of the country are only $900,000, then they will run on $100,000 deficit. Okay?
“Surplus” is the opposite. “Surplus” is when the government or any company, you don’t have to apply this to a government, when you have more money than you need for the budget. So if I need to spend a million dollars over the next year, but I have a million and a half, then I have half a million dollar surplus, which is always a good thing.
“Inflation/deflation”. “Inflation” is when prices of goods and services go up, but wages stay the same. So, basically, the purchase power of the individual goes down. You have the same amount of money, but you can buy fewer things or you can hire fewer people to do to have services for you. “Deflation” is the opposite. That’s when prices go down, and the value of your dollar or your currency goes up. Both situations are not good.