Trade is the transfer of ownership of goods and services from one person or entity to another by getting something in exchange from the buyer. Trade is sometimes loosely called commerce or financial transaction or barter. A network that allows trade is called a market. The original form of trade was barter, the direct exchange of goods and services. Later one side of the barter were the metals, precious metals (poles, coins), bill, paper money. Modern traders instead generally negotiate through a medium of exchange, such as money. As a result, buying can be separated from selling, or earning. The invention of money (and later credit, paper money and non-physical money) greatly simplified and promoted trade. Trade between two traders is called bilateral trade, while trade between more than two traders is called multilateral trade.
Trade exists for man due to specialization and division of labor, most people concentrate on a small aspect of production, trading for other products. Trade exists between regions because different regions have a comparative advantage in the production of some tradable commodity, or because different regions' size allows for the benefits of mass production. As such, trade at market prices between locations benefits both locations.
Retail trade consists of the sale of goods or merchandise from a very fixed location, such as a department store, boutique or kiosk, or by mail, in small or individual lots for direct consumption by the purchaser. Wholesale trade is defined as the sale of goods or merchandise to retailers, to industrial, commercial, institutional, or other professional business users, or to other wholesalers and related subordinated services.
Trading can also refer to the action performed by traders and other market agents in the financial markets.
Famous quotes containing the word trade:
“The very hirelings of the press, whose trade it is to buoy up the spirits of the people ... have uttered falsehoods so long, they have played off so many tricks, that their budget seems, at last, to be quite empty.”
—William Cobbett (17621835)
“I might be driven to sell your love for peace,
Or trade the memory of this night for food.
It well may be. I do not think I would.”
—Edna St. Vincent Millay (18921950)
“The last job I had, I had to take it out in trade and this is no butcher shopnot yet, anyhow!”
—Robert Pirosh, U.S. screenwriter, George Seaton, George Oppenheimer, and Sam Wood. Dr. Hugo Z. Hackenbush (Groucho Marx)