Business is the activity of making one's living or making money by producing or buying and selling products (such as goods and services). Simply put, it is "any activity or enterprise entered into for profit. It does not mean it is a company, a corporation, partnership, or have any such formal organization, but it can range from a street peddler to General Motors."
Having a business name does not separate the business entity from the owner, which means that the owner of the business is responsible and liable for debts incurred by the business. If the business acquires debts, the creditors can go after the owner's personal possessions. A business structure does not allow for corporate tax rates. The proprietor is personally taxed on all income from the business.
The term is also often used colloquially (but not by lawyers or by public officials) to refer to a company. A company, on the other hand, is a separate legal entity and provides for limited liability, as well as corporate tax rates. A company structure is more complicated and expensive to set up, but offers more protection and benefits for the owner.
|A photograph of traders on the New York Stock Exchange floor in 1963
Capitalism is an economic system in which the means of production are privately owned and operated for profit, usually in competitive markets. Income in a capitalist system takes at least two forms, profit on the one hand and wages on the other. There is also a tradition that treats rent, income from the control of natural resources, as a third phenomenon distinct from either of those. In any case, profit is what is received, by virtue of control of the tools of production, by those who provide the capital. Often profits are used to expand an enterprise, thus creating more jobs and wealth. Wages are received by those who provide a service to the enterprise, also known as workers, but do not have an ownership stake in it, and are therefore compensated irrespective of whether the enterprise makes a profit or a loss. In the case of profitable enterprise, profits are therefore not translated to workers except at the discretion of the owners, who may or may not receive increased compensation, whereas losses are not translated to workers except at similar discretion manifested by decreased compensation.
A fish market is a marketplace used for marketing fish products. It can be dedicated to wholesale trade between fishermen and fish merchants, or to the sale of seafood to individual consumers, or to both. Retail fish markets, a type of wet market, often sell street food as well.
Fish markets range in size from small fish stalls to the great Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo, turning over about 660,000 tonnes a year.
Again, if expenses are too great, and it seems impossible to meet competition, there is seldom any serious effort made to find out why expenses are too high, but it is assumed that the way out of the difficulty is to reduce wages. It never appears to occur to a manager that perhaps the cause of the excessive expense may not lie with the workman, but with the management. Managers rarely seem to suspect that, if the workmen were more intelligently directed, the output per man might be largely increased without a corresponding increase in expense.
Those who have given even superficial study to the subject are beginning to realize the enormous gain that can be made in the efficiency of workmen, if they are properly directed and provided with proper appliances. Few, however, have realized another fact of equal importance, namely, that to maintain permanently this increase of efficiency, the workman must be allowed a portion of the benefit derived from it.
To obtain this high degree of efficiency successfully, however, the same careful scientific analysis and investigation must be applied to every labor detail as the chemist or biologist applies to his work. Wherever this has been done, it has been found possible to reduce expenses, and, at the same time, to increase wages, producing a condition satisfactory to both employer and employee.
The great difficulty in instituting this method of dealing with labor questions is that usually neither employer nor employee has sufficient knowledge of the scientific method to realize either the amount of detail work necessary, or the extent of the benefits to bo derived from it. In general, their inclination is to adhere to the methods with which they are familiar, and to distrust all others, even though their methods have failed to bring them appreciably nearer the solution of their problems, and the newer methods have produced results far more satisfactory than they even hoped for. A scientific investigation into the details of a condition that has grown up unassisted by science has never yet failed to show that economies and improvements are feasible that benefit both parties to an extent unsuspected by either.
- —Henry Gantt, Work, wages, and profits, 1913
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On this day in Business history...
Did you know
- ...that EID Parry is one of the oldest business entities in the Indian subcontinent and owes its origin to Thomas Parry, a Welshman who came to India in late 1780s?