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Definition: Investment

IMF terminology

Investment from the perspective of the domestic economy is the purchase of capital equipment, e.g., machines and computers, and the construction of fixed capital, e.g., factories, roads, housing, that serve to raise the level of output in the future. From the perspective of an individual, investment is expenditure, usually on a financial asset, designed to increase the individual's future wealth.
International Monetary Fund (IMF), "Online glossary of selected financial terms" (as per March 15th, 2008), International Monetary Fund, Washington D.C., 2008