What Does "Money" Mean in an Economic Context?

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Money is a good that acts as a medium of exchange in transactions. Classically, it is said that money acts as a unit of account, a store of value, and a medium of exchange. Most authors find that the first two are nonessential properties that follow from the third. In fact, other goods are often better than money at being intertemporal stores of value, since most monies degrade in value over time through inflation or the overthrow of governments.

 By this definition, what we typically think of as money- i.e. currency- does in fact fit the economic definition of money, but so do a lot of other items in the economy.  Economists are quick to point out that money in an economy can take different forms, but these different forms usually carry different levels of liquidity.
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