INTEREST RATE is the rate of interest charged for the use of money, usually expressed as an annual rate. The rate is derived by dividing the amount of interest by the amount of principal borrowed. For example, if a bank charged $100 a year to borrow $1,000, the interest rate would be 10%. Interest rates are quoted on bills, notes, bonds, credit cards and many kinds of consumer and business loans. Rates in general tend to rise with inflation and in response to the Federal Reserve raising key short-term rates. A rise in interest rates has a negative effect on the stock market because investors can get more competitive returns from buying newly issued bonds instead of stocks. It also hurts the secondary market for bonds because rates look less attractive compared to newer issues.
MINIMUM PAYMENT is the minimum amount that you must pay, e.g. usually monthly on a home equity loan or line of credit. In some payment agreements the minimum payment may be "interest only" (simple interest). In other loan agreements, the minimum payment may include principal and interest (amortized).
PATENT is a legal form of protection that provides a person or legal entity with exclusive rights to exclude others from making, using, or selling a concept or invention for the duration of the patent. There are three types of patents available: design, plant, and utility.
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