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This article is about the business concept; Commerce is also the name of several places in the United States.

Commerce is the exchange of something of value between two entities. That "something" may be goods, services, information, money, or anything else the two entities consider to have value. Commerce is the central mechanism from which capitalism is derived. The process of transforming something into a commercial activity is called commercialization.

History of Commerce

Commerce has its origins from the very start of communication in prehistoric times. Trading was the main facility of prehistoric people, who bartered what they had for goods and services from each other. Later currency was invented to represent these goods and services. The basic need for currency is obvious. For example, if a man who makes pots for a living needs a new house, he must hire someone to build it for him. But he cannot make an equivalent number of pots to equal this service done to him, and even if he could the house builder might not want the pots. Currency solved this problem by allowing values to be assigned to things so that goods and services can in a way be effectively collected and stored for later use, or split among several providers.

Today commerce involves a complex system of companies that try to maximise their profits by offering products and services to the market, which consists both of individuals and other companies.

See also

Last updated: 02-05-2005 11:16:10
Last updated: 02-11-2005 17:47:38