Looking at the official Ferengi Emblem I am at a loss as to what it is supposed to represent (other than perhaps constantly accumulating wealth). Does anyone know what the creative staff had in mind when designing the Ferengi Emblem?
The official Impel Star Trek Trading Card for the Symbol of the Ferengi Alliance contains the following information on its reverse:
The behavior of the Ferengi Alliance and its race can often seem sinister or underhanded. Actually, the Ferengi follow their own very strict code of ethics. They seem so aggressive because they are the galaxy's most extreme capitalists -- they seek to acquire as much property and profit as they can in life. Conquest in trade or business is as important to the Ferengi as victory in combat (if not more so).
The Symbol of the Ferengi Alliance is a graphic representation of their narrow view of life: a "dog-eat-dog" world is represented by a small circle being engulfed by a larger symbol, which itself is being "eaten" by another!
I think any answer to this would be subjective. There's no specific answer because it was designed by Michael Okuda as something to represent rank. No further thought was behind it in official canon. Nothing official is mentioned about the logo on the official ST site article.
Quote from Memory Alpha (and I'm not claiming this to be the ultimate truth):
The logo and tattoo was designed by Michael Okuda. According to production work from the first season of TNG, no chevron indicated a regular crewmember, one chevron indicated a salesman, third class; two chevrons were worn by salesmen, second class and three chevrons (the third one wider than the regular two) would have indicated a salesman, first class, similar to an assistant manager. The last version of the tattoo was never seen on the show. The first civilian (and therefore untattooed) Ferengi seen was Omag. All the Ferengi seen on DS9 were civilians and none of them wore tattoos."
I cannot find any sources to hand, but from back in the 1990s I recall a behind-the-scenes documentary mentioning that it represented the 'dog eat dog' nature of Ferengi society.
The 'little' dog has acquired a pearl but has now been consumed, with its wealth, by the bigger dog.
Though presumably the Ferengi wouldn't have dogs as such, but something analogous.
I would add my own interpretation. the statements regarding a dog eat dog nature is very true. however i would also postulate that it is a simple graphic representation of the great flowing river of commerce. you can be lucky, and grab fortune on the river, but you are still flowing within it. you are meant to navigate it and carry goods from supply to demand, perhaps the small ball is being carried in the hands of the larger object, while flowing on the river of the larger object.