Government Contracts

Throughout the 1990s the U.S. government has expended some $200 billion annually, or between 2 and 3 percent of U.S.

Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB)

The Government Accounting Standards Board (GASB) was created in 1984 to establish generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) for state and local government entities. Prior to 1984, issues in public sector accounting were addressed by the National Committee on Governmental Accounting (NCGA) of the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA).

Graphical User Interface (GUI)

A graphical user interface (GUI, often pronounced "gooey") is a type of computer input/output system that represents directions, programs, and files with pictures and spatial relations.

Gray Market

The gray market refers to those goods that are legitimately imported from abroad, carry a recognizable trademark or brand name, and are sold at significant discounts outside of the manufacturer's normal channels of distribution. The practice of gray marketing has affected a wide range of consumer and other products, including personal computers, automobiles, perfume, cameras, watches, film, and semiconductors.

Green Marketing

Environmentally responsible or "green" marketing refers to the satisfaction of consumer needs, wants, and desires in conjunction with the preservation and conservation of the natural environment. Considered an oxymoron by many environmentalists (because it still promotes consumption, albeit so-called responsible consumption), green marketing manipulates the four elements of the marketing mix (product, price, promotion, and distribution) to sell products and services offering superior environmental benefits in the form of reduced waste, increased energy efficiency, and/or decreased release of toxic emissions.


Greenmail can be loosely defined as a type of legal blackmail. It occurs when publicl3y traded companies are forced to buy back shares, at a premium to the current trading price, from large investors or corporate raiders in order to maintain their independence.

Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

A country's gross domestic product (GDP) is similar to its gross national product (GNP), except that GDP excludes net income from foreign sources. Like GNP, GDP is a measure of the value of a country's production of goods and services for a specific period, usually one year.

Gross National Product (GNP)

A country's gross national product (GNP) is a measure of the value of its production of goods and services for a specific period, usually one year. Comparisons of GNP from year to year or quarter to quarter, when measured in constant dollars, indicate changes in a country's overall production and the direction of its economy.


The term "groupthink" was coined by psychologist Irving Janis to explain some alarmingly bad decisions (and bad outcomes) made by governments and businesses, which he called "fiascoes." He was particularly drawn to situations where group pressure seemed to result in a fundamental failure to think.

Guaranteed Investment Contract (GIC)

Guaranteed investment contracts (GICs) are a type of financial instrument available to investors. Primarily based on an article by Kleiman and Sahu in the American Association of Individual Investors Journal, key characteristics, advantages and disadvantages of owning guaranteed investment contracts are explained in this essay.

Handbooks and Manuals

Handbooks and manuals are the most common form of documentation in the business environment. Many now come in electronic forms, such as documentation stored on a corporate intranet, but in whatever form they appear, they are used to instruct and guide employees on technical procedures, corporate policies, and many other kinds of information that is not intuitively obvious or easy to remember.

Hawthorne Experiments

The Hawthorne experiments were groundbreaking studies in human relations that were conducted between 1924 and 1932 at Western Electric Company's Hawthorne Works in Chicago. Originally designed as illumination studies to determine the relationship between lighting and productivity, the initial tests were sponsored by the National Research Council (NRC) of the National Academy of Sciences.

Health Care Costs on Business, Impact of

Throughout the administration of President Bill Clinton there was no escaping intense, detailed discussion of the cost of health care. During 1993 and 1994, President Clinton guaranteed he would veto any health care bill set before him that did not include universal coverage for every American.

Health Insurance Options

Health insurance, like other forms of insurance, serves to spread the consequences of a loss that would normally fall upon a single individual over members of a large group. It also ensures that health care providers will be paid for services that an uninsured individual may otherwise not be able to afford.


Often cited as the major economic justification for futures markets, hedging is the act of taking a temporary position in the futures market that is equal to, yet opposite, one's position in the cash market in order to protect that cash position against loss due to unfavorable price fluctuations. This form of risk management can be accomplished through several types of futures and options contracts traded on a number of exchanges, and is usually practiced by corporations, money managers, or other professional investors.

Hiring Practices

When companies require new employees either because of expansion or employee turnover, they undertake a process of identifying the positions available and the skills needed to fill them. Next, companies launch any number of recruiting campaigns: placing newspaper advertisements, soliciting referrals from colleagues and employees, conducting job fairs, etc.


Similar in appearance to a column graph, histograms illustrate the frequency of occurrence of some measurable event or property. They are used to display statistics in business, economics, and other disciplines, and provide a useful tool for analyzing data and trends.

Holding Companies

A holding company is a corporation that is organized for the purpose of owning stock in other corporations. A company may become a holding company by acquiring enough voting stock in another company to exercise control of its operations, or by forming a new corporation and retaining all or part of the new corporation's stock.

Home Offices

It may be a corner of a spare bedroom and nothing more than a desk. Or it could be one whole floor of the house filled with the latest computer and communications devices.

Hours of Labor

To businesses, hours of labor indicate productivity and human capital invested into rendering a product or service. For employees, however, the time spent working—as well as free from working—is more likely considered a quality-of-life measurement or a gauge of how much income to expect.

Human Capital

The concept of human capital refers to the education, on-the job training, and work experience of the labor force. It is analogous to other forms of capital in that investments in human capital yield income and other benefits over a long time.

Human Resource Information System (HRIS)

A human resource information system (HRIS) is defined as a computer based application for assembling and processing data related to the human resource management (HRM) function. As in other types of information systems, an HRIS consists of a database, which contains one or more files in which the data relevant to the system are maintained, and a database management system, which provides the means by which users of the system access and utilize these data.

Human Resource Management (HRM)

Human resource management (HRM), or human resource development, entails planning, implementing, and managing recruitment, as well as selection, training, career, and organizational development initiatives within an organization. The goal of HRM is to maximize the productivity of an organization by optimizing the effectiveness of its employees while simultaneously improving the work life of employees and treating employees as valuable resources.

Hypothesis Testing

Hypothesis testing, the backbone of the scientific method, is a methodology for evaluating a business or economic theory. A hypothesis is a proposition or statement about the world—derived from any source, from whim or fancy, from accumulated knowledge, from dominant or heretical ideas, from prejudices, or from guesses—that is capable of being confronted with facts and is thus capable of being refuted or confirmed by those facts.

Illiteracy in the Workplace

"Workplace illiteracy" is considered a business and social problem when workers are not able to read or write well enough to function optimally on the job. While illiteracy occurs in many fields, it is most prevalent among clerical and traditional blue-collar industrial workers.

Implicit Price Deflator

The implicit price deflator is an index that is used to gauge the extent of price level changes or inflation in the economy. This index is essentially one of three different methods by which inflation in the economy is measured.


Importing is the purchasing side of trade and takes place when one region acquires goods or services from another region. The region that sells the goods or services is the exporter, whereas the region the buys the goods or services is the importer.

Income and Revenue

Income is an important concept in economics as well as in accounting. Accountants prepare an income statement to measure a company's income for a given accounting period.