Investors are showing more caution in the current economic environment.

I interpreted it in 2 ways:

1) Conditions in which economic activity take place

2) conditions and influences in which they carry on economic activity.

Which one is correct, and are there any other interpretations possible?

  • 3
    I don't see a distinction between 'economic activity taking place' and '[people] carrying on economic activity'. Commented Aug 24, 2023 at 10:35
  • Also, "influences in which" is ungrammatical. Commented Aug 24, 2023 at 21:44

2 Answers 2


Both are right, however the first is more easily understood than the second one. But yes "something carrying out economic activity" and "economic activity taking place" is the same thing. The only difference comes in when you define that "something", e.g. people.


environment is an overused nearly meaningless word when combined with a noun that already implies the meaning of the word "environment". It merely adds flatulence to prose. The current economic environment could be replaced with the current economy.

Merriam-Webster offers this relevant definition of economy:

the structure or conditions of economic life in a country, area, or period

[my emphasis]

The word current tells which period. So the word economy has as part of its meaning the "conditions", which is what the word environment means.

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