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mutual transfer of goods, money, services, or their equivalents; also the marketplace where such transfer occurs, such as a stock exchange or a commodity exchange (see commodity market).
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in civil law, one of the forms of contract whereby the parties exchange property for other property. After the barter contract is executed, each of the parties loses the right of ownership to the property transferred and acquires that right to the property received. The similarity between the barter contract, which involves the compensated transfer of ownership of property, and the contract of sale and purchase means that many of the rules relating to the contract of sale and purchase can be applied to the barter contract (a procedure established in Soviet legislation).
Barter originated as a primitive form of commodity exchange but was supplanted by sale and purchase and has generally become insignificant. Under Soviet law the barter contract usually is concluded between citizens, but it may also be made between cooperative and other public organizations. A barter contract involving state organizations may be concluded in cases specifically envisioned by the laws of the USSR and the Union republics.