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> this example shows that real wealth doesn’t actually come from golden hoards. It comes from the productive activities of human beings creating things that other human beings desire.

Value, Price, and Wealth


I'd suggest a different triad: cost, price, value.


Good call. I don't know where I was going with that. Cost, price, value, and wealth.

Are there better examples for illustrating the differences between these kind of distinct terms?

Less convertible collectibles like coins and baseball cards (that require energy for exchange) have (over time t): costs of production, marketing, and distribution; retail sales price; market price; and 'value' which is abstract relative (opportunity cost in terms of fiat currency (which is somehow distinct from price at time t (possibly due to 'speculative information')))

Wealth comes from relationships, margins between costs and prices, long term planning, […]

Are there better examples for illustrating the differences between these kind of distinct terms?

For concepts as intrinsically fundamental to economics as these are, the agreement and understanding of what they are, even amomg economists, is surprisingly poor. It's not even clear whether or not "wealth" refers to a flow or stock -- Adam Smith uses the term both ways. And much contemporary mainstream 'wealth creation" discussion addresses accounting profit rather than economic wealth. Or broader terms such aas ecological wealth (or natural capital). There's some progress, and Steve Keen has been synthesizing much of it recently, but the terms fare poorly.

A key issue is that "price‘ and "exchange value" are ofteen conflated, creating confusiin with use/ownership value.

Addressing your terms, "cost" and "price", and typically "value", indicate some metric of exchange or opportunity cost (or benefit). Whilst "wealth", as typically used, tends to relate to some store or accumulation. In electrical terms (a potentially, so to speak, useful analogue) the difference between voltage and charge, with current representing some other property, possibly material flows of goods or energy.

The whole question of media for exchange (currency, and the like), and durable forms of financial wealth (land, art, collectibles) is another interesting one, with discussionnby Ricardo and Jevons quite interesting -- both useful and flawed.

And don't even get me started on the near total discounting of accumulated natural capital, say, the 100-300 million year factor of time embodied in fossil fuels. The reasons and rationales for excluding that being fascinating (Ricardo, Tolstoy, Gray, Hotelling, Boulding, Soddy, Georgescu-Roegen, Daly, Keen).

You are correct that all value (and hence wealth) is relative, and hence relational.

TL;DR: Not that I'm aware.

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