AskDefine | Define economical

Dictionary Definition

economical adj
1 using the minimum of time or resources necessary for effectiveness; "an economic use of home heating oil"; "a modern economical heating system"; "an economical use of her time" [syn: economic]
2 of or relating to an economy, the system of production and management of material wealth; "economic growth"; "aspects of social, political, and economical life" [syn: economic]
3 avoiding waste; "an economical meal"; "an economical shopper"; "a frugal farmer"; "a frugal lunch"; "a sparing father and a spending son"; "sparing in their use of heat and light"; "stinting in bestowing gifts"; "thrifty because they remember the great Depression"; "`scotch' is used only informally" [syn: frugal, scotch, sparing, stinting]

User Contributed Dictionary



From economic + -al


  • (UK) /ˌɛkəˈnɒmɪkəl/, /%Ek@"nQmIk@l/
  • (US) /ˌɛkəˈnɑmɪkəl/, /%Ek@"nAmIk@l/


  1. Careful with money so as not to spend too much; prudent; thrifty.
  2. Relating to economy in any other sense.


careful with money
relating to economy

See also

Extensive Definition

An economic system is a particular set of social institutions which deals with the production, distribution and consumption of goods and services in a particular society. The economic system is composed of people and institutions, including their relationships to productive resources, such as through the convention of property. In a given economy, it is the systemic means by which problems of economics are addressed, such as the economic problem of scarcity through allocation of finite productive resources. Examples of contemporary economic systems include capitalist systems, socialist systems, and mixed economies. Economic systems is the economics category that includes the study of respective systems.


-An economic system is a set of methods and standards brought by which a society decides and organizes the ownership and allocation of economic resources. At one extreme, production is carried in a private-enterprise system such that all resources are privately owned. It was described by Adam Smith as frequently promoting a social interest, although only a private interest was intended. At the other extreme, following Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin is what is commonly called a pure-communist system, such that all resources are publicly owned with an intent of minimizing inequalities of wealth among other social objectives.
Alternatively, 'economic system' refers to the organizational arrangements and process through which a society makes its production and consumption decisions. In creating and modifying its economic system, each society chooses among alternative objectives and alternative decision modes. Many objectives may be seen as desirable, like efficiency, growth, liberty, and equality. An economic system can be considered a part of the social system and hierarchically equal to the law system, political system, cultural system, etc. There is often a strong correlation between a certain ideologies, political systems and certain economic systems (for example, consider the meanings of the term "communism"). Many economic systems overlap each other in various areas (for example, the term "mixed economy" can be argued to include elements from various systems). There are also various mutually exclusive hierarchical categorizations. The basic and general economic systems are:
There are several basic and unfinished questions that must be answered in order to resolve the problems of economics satisfactorily. The scarcity problem, for example, requires answers to basic questions, such as: what to produce, how to produce it, and who gets what is produced. An economic system is a way of answering these basic questions. Different economic systems answer them way different.

Division of economic systems

Typically, "hands-on" economic systems involve a greater role for society and/or the government to determine what gets produced, how it gets produced, and who gets the produced goods and services, with the stated aim of ensuring social justice and a more equitable distribution of wealth (see welfare state). Meanwhile, "hands-off" that means dont touch an one and keep your hands to your self economic systems give more power to private individuals (and perhaps corporations) to make those decisions, rather than leaving them up to society as a whole, and often limit government involvement in the economy.
The primary concern of "hands-on" economic systems is usually egalitarianism, while the primary concern of "hands-off" economic systems is usually private property. Libertarians target individual economic freedom as a primary goal of their "hands-off" policies.
The following list divides the main economic systems into "hands-on" and "hands-off," it attempts to structure the systems in a given section by alphabetical order and in a vertical hierarchy where possible.

"Compromise" systems

List of economic systems by Name

An etymologist's approach to economic systems, this list attempts to sort all possible economic systems in alphabetical order, without any division or hierarchization.


Further reading

  • Richard Bonney (1995), Economic Systems and State Finance, 680 pp.
  • David W. Conklin (1991), Comparative Economic Systems, Cambridge University Press, 427 pp.
  • George Sylvester Counts (1970), Bolshevism, Fascism, and Capitalism: An Account of the Three Economic Systems.
  • Robert L. Heilbroner and Peter J. Boettke (2007). "Economic Systems". The New Encyclopædia Britannica, v. 17, pp. 908-15.
  • Harold Glenn Moulton, Financial Organization and the Economic System, 515 pp.
  • Jacques Jacobus Polak (2003), An International Economic System, 179 pp.
  • Frederic L. Pryor (1996), Economic Evolution and Structure: 384 pp.
  • Frederic L. Pryor (2005), Economic Systems of Foraging, Agricultural, and Industrial Societies'', 332 pp.

External links

economical in Arabic: نظام اقتصادي
economical in Bulgarian: Икономическа структура
economical in German: Wirtschaftssystem
economical in Estonian: Majandus
economical in Spanish: Sistema económico
economical in French: Système économique
economical in Indonesian: Sistem perekonomian
economical in Italian: Sistema economico
economical in Hebrew: משטר כלכלי
economical in Georgian: ეკონომიკური სისტემა
economical in Hungarian: Gazdasági rendszer
economical in Russian: Экономические системы
economical in Simple English: Economy
economical in Slovak: Ekonomický systém
economical in Finnish: Talousjärjestelmä
economical in Swedish: Ekonomiskt system
economical in Tamil: பொருளாதார அமைப்புக்கள்
economical in Yiddish: ווירטשאפט
economical in Chinese: 经济体系

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Scotch, budget, canny, careful, chary, cheap, cheeseparing, close, conservative, conserving, easy, economic, economizing, economy, forehanded, frugal, inexpensive, labor-saving, low, low-priced, manageable, mean, miserly, moderate, modest, money-saving, niggardly, nominal, parsimonious, penny-pinching, penny-wise, penurious, politico-economic, provident, prudent, prudential, reasonable, saving, scrimping, sensible, shabby, shoddy, skimping, socio-economic, spare, sparing, stingy, thrifty, tight, tight-fisted, time-saving, token, unexpensive, unwasteful, within means, worth the money
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