Kamis, 07 Maret 2013

The Methods of Exchange - Video for Listening Comprehension in English Classroom

If the principle of trading has existed since the mists of time, the methods of exchange have themselves evolved.

In the past we used to barter, which consisted in exchanging goods or crops. Today, each country has its own currency. Some countries adopt a common currency, like the euro in Europe.

Nowadays there are different ways of making your money bear fruit. For example, you can put your money on the stock market, whether in Bangkok or Tokyo.

Then you have to cross your fingers and hope the share value increases. But in reality, it's a lot more complex than mere superstition!

Some financial analysts compare the different markets, make forecasts on future interest rates in each country, and invest in fluctuating values.

For example, on this market, the most valued products are foodstuffs such as wheat, coffee or sugar. But all products, be they agricultural, industrial or other, have their own importance, since it's the fluctuation of their different values that make a country's economy function.

The gross national product represents the value of the goods and services acquired, in one year, by the economic activity in national or foreign territories, without taking depreciation into account.

It shouldn't be confused with the gross domestic product, the wealth created during the year inside the country!

However, a country must know how to balance its imports and exports. If it doesn't, it'll find itself with a trade imbalance which may either be a deficit or a surplus.

Economic activity follows three stages: the production of goods and services, the distribution of incomes, and the expenditure corresponding to consumption aimed at satisfying needs.

Whilst following its own economic policy, each country has to try and manage these three stages as best it can.

In a global economy, a country's government may no longer have control over certain variables, such as the exchange rate of its currency. Little by little, this may lead to a situation where it's no longer capable of managing its economy properly.

A rise in prices may harm the competitiveness of national products, in particular when inflation is greater than abroad. In that case, imports increase and money must be found to pay for the purchases.

This is particularly difficult since the price of national goods abroad is shooting up, reducing foreign sales. At the same time, companies have more and more trouble coping, and so reduce their output.

Manpower is in turn restricted, unemployment goes up and purchasing power falls considerably. A vicious circle thus takes hold...

This is one of the many scenarios that can turn a country upside down and widen the social divide. Unfortunately, there's no miracle solution to economic disparity!

See other video scripts of the same level (Business++):
The Methods of Exchange
How A Contract Is Concluded
Computer Technology
About Distribution
Visits from Foreign Sales Representatives
About Wine and Wine Making

Other script of different level can be found here:
Video for Listening Comprehension from Tell me More Business++ Level

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