Economics is a social science that studies society's allocation
of scarce resources to meet desires and wants.
Table of contents
of study in economics
of economics and related subjects
of economic thought
and other disciplines
Economics begins with the premise that resources are in limited
supply and that it is necessary to choose between competing
alternatives. The subject is said to be positive when it attempts
to explain the consequences of different choices given a set
of assumptions and normative when it prescribes a certain
route of action.
Aspects receiving particular attention in economics are resource
allocation, trade and competition. A small number of economists
prefer to define economics as the study of how and why people
trade (this definition implies scarcity).
Economics is broadly divided into two main branches: microeconomics,
which deals with individual agents, and macroeconomics, which
considers the economy as a whole. Economics may in principle
be applied to any problem that involves choice under scarcity;
this includes such diverse topics as the governance of production,
distribution of wealth as well as the various related problems
of finance, taxation, labour, law, poverty, pollution etc.