account

noun
ac·​count | \ ə-ˈkau̇nt How to pronounce account (audio) \

Definition of account

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a record of debit (see debit entry 2 sense 1a) and credit (see credit entry 1 sense 2d) entries to cover transactions involving a particular item or a particular person or concern
b : a statement of transactions during a fiscal period and the resulting balance
c archaic : reckoning, computation
2a : a statement explaining one's conduct She was asked to give an account of her actions.
b : a statement or exposition of reasons, causes, or motives no satisfactory account of these phenomena
c : a reason for an action : basis On that account I must refuse.
3a(1) : a formal business arrangement providing for regular dealings or services (such as banking, advertising, or store credit) and involving the establishment and maintenance of an account a checking account also : client, customer They are one of our most important accounts.
(2) : money deposited in a bank account and subject to withdrawal by the depositor
b : an arrangement in which a person uses the Internet or e-mail services of a particular company
4a : value, importance It's of no account to me.
b : esteem stood high in their account
5 : advantage turned her wit to good account
6a : careful thought : consideration have to take many things into account
b : a usually mental record : track Keep account of all you do.
7 : a description of facts, conditions, or events : report, narrative the newspaper account of the fire By all accounts they're well-off. also : performance a straightforward account of the sonata
give a good account of oneself
: to perform well especially in a competition or confrontation : to acquit oneself well Though he has an aristocratic bearing, he could probably give a good account of himself in a street fight.— Ishmael Reed
on account
: with the price charged to one's account purchasing on account
on account of
: for the sake of : because of The game was cancelled on account of rain.
on no account
: under no circumstances On no account should the children be left alone at home.
on one's own account
1 : on one's own behalf I'm doing it on my own account, not for anyone else.
2 : at one's own risk
3 : by oneself : on one's own

account

verb
accounted; accounting; accounts

Definition of account (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to furnish a justifying analysis or explanation used with forcouldn't account for the loss
2a : to be the sole or primary factor used with forThe left fielder accounted for all three putouts.
b : to bring about the capture, death, or destruction of something used with forEnemy fighters accounted for two of the bombers.

transitive verb

1 : to think of as : consider accounts himself lucky
2 : to probe into : analyze

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Examples of account in a Sentence

Noun the difference between the debit and credit sides of an account We always keep very good accounts. We opened new accounts at a bank last week. I took out my money and closed my account. You can withdraw up to $1,000 a day from your account. Every week, she puts a part of her paycheck into a separate account. setting up a bank account Verb account themselves lucky to be alive
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The miner-cum-commodities trader spent another $45 million consulting lawyers and experts about the various ongoing investigations in the first six months of this year, its accounts show. Chris Bryant | Bloomberg, Washington Post, "Glencore’s Lawyers Get Set for Another Pay Day," 5 Dec. 2019 If your association incorrectly charges you, your first step is to communicate with them to have your account fixed. Gary Singer, sun-sentinel.com, "Ask a real estate pro: My condo association’s suing me. Can I ignore them?," 5 Dec. 2019 Further violations may lead to guests having their accounts suspended or removed. Carolyn Said, SFChronicle.com, "Airbnb: No bad guests allowed, no open-invite parties," 5 Dec. 2019 This week, Josh Jacobs posted a short video to his Snapchat account that showed his right shoulder wrapped in ice. Mark Inabinett | Minabinett@al.com, al, "NFL Week 14: Josh Jacobs playing with ‘fractured’ shoulder," 5 Dec. 2019 There was a maiden grand slam quarterfinal at home in Melbourne and moving inside the top 10 -- before opening her grand slam account on the clay surface that wasn't her favorite. Ravi Ubha, CNN, "Nadal, Barty, Djokovic and Gauff: Tennis' 2019 wrap," 5 Dec. 2019 Later that day, police called the witnesses and heard their accounts of what occurred, then police issued a warrant for Kluver’s arrest, the statement reads. Mary Grace Keller, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Pennsylvania man charged with assaulting woman in Westminster while stopped at light," 5 Dec. 2019 The popular eel has boasted its own Twitter account, with a little help from Tennessee Tech University’s iCube center. Fox News, "Electric eel powers Tennessee Aquarium's Christmas lights, in shocking use of science," 5 Dec. 2019 On Memorial Day, his Instagram account posted a photo of the dog at the National World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. Matt Young, Houston Chronicle, "J.J. Watt gets kiss from Sully, George H.W. Bush's former service dog," 1 Dec. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Gender minorities accounted for less than 1 percent of victims. Joelle Goldstein, PEOPLE.com, "Uber Reveals Nearly 6,000 Incidents of Sexual Assault Were Linked to Company in 2 Year Period," 5 Dec. 2019 In the first half of 2019, coal accounted for just 6% of Drax’s electricity output. The Economist, "Climate policy needs negative carbon-dioxide emissions," 5 Dec. 2019 The refinance share of mortgage activity accounted for 59 percent of applications. Washington Post, "Mortgage rates settle after an up-and-down week," 5 Dec. 2019 In 2017, Cooks (with Edelman missing the entire season because of an injury) accounted for 32.86, which Edelman is averaging this year. BostonGlobe.com, "a look at Next Gen Stats," 4 Dec. 2019 Nonresident workers accounted for 17.9 percent of the state’s construction labor force in 2017, according the state Labor Department. Elwood Brehmer, Anchorage Daily News, "State settles Alaska-hire lawsuit brought by contractor," 4 Dec. 2019 In fact, differences in levels of inbreeding accounted for 22 percent of the differing severity of mandibular prognathism among the Habsburgs studied. Lila Thulin, Smithsonian, "The Distinctive ‘Habsburg Jaw’ Was Likely the Result of the Royal Family’s Inbreeding," 4 Dec. 2019 Technology companies, banks and industrial stocks accounted for much of the sell-off, which extended the S&P 500’s losing streak to a third day. Alex Veiga, SFChronicle.com, "China trade deal doubts send stocks sliding," 3 Dec. 2019 Shopping on smartphones accounted for 33% of those sales, an increase of 46% compared on the same day in 2018. Jordan Valinsky, CNN, "Cyber Monday was Amazon's biggest shopping day in the company's history," 3 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'account.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of account

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1c

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for account

Noun

Middle English acounte, accompt, borrowed from Anglo-French acunte, acounte, noun derivative of acunter "to account entry 2"

Verb

Middle English accounten, acounten, accompten "to count, compute, evaluate, give an account of," borrowed from Anglo-French acunter, acompter, from a-, prefix forming transitive verbs (going back to Latin ad- ad-) + cunter, compter "to count entry 1"

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Time Traveler for account

Time Traveler

The first known use of account was in the 14th century

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Statistics for account

Last Updated

8 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Account.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/account. Accessed 13 December 2019.

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More Definitions for account

on account

noun

Financial Definition of on account

What It Is

On account is a term that describes situations in which a customer makes a partial payment for goods or services purchased.

How It Works

In the business world, buying things on account is the same as creating accounts payable. For example, let's assume that Company XYZ orders $1 million in widget parts from its supplier.

Company XYZ pays the supplier $100,000 and puts the other $900,000 on account. This basically means it will pay the rest later -- let's say in 60 days.

Why It Matters

Buying things on account is similar to saying, "put it on my tab." Eventually, however, you have to pay the tab. In our example, the transaction requires careful accounting. Once Company XYZ places its order and/or receives the parts, it will increase its inventory account by $1 million, decrease its cash by $100,000, and increase its accounts payable by $900,000. When 60 days has passed and Company XYZ pays the invoice, it will reduce cash by $900,000 and reduce its accounts payable by $900,000.

Technically, any kind of installment loan (such as your mortgage or car loan) is akin to putting something on account. In the business world, putting things on account usually creates accounts payable (or A/P). A/P is a liability, and as such, it appears on the balance sheet.

In turn, when accounts payable go down, this is considered a use of cash on the company's cash flow statement, and as such, it reduces the company's working capital (defined as current assets minus current liabilities). When accounts payable goes up, this is considered a source of cash on the company's cash flow statement because the company is "stretching out" the time it takes to pay its invoices and thus not using cash as quickly.

Source: Investing Answers

account

noun
How to pronounce account (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of account

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a record of money that has been paid and money that has been received
: records of income and expenses
: an arrangement in which a bank keeps a record of the money that a person puts in and takes out of the bank

account

verb

English Language Learners Definition of account (Entry 2 of 2)

formal : to think of (someone or something) in a specified way

account

noun
ac·​count | \ ə-ˈkau̇nt \

Kids Definition of account

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a record of money received and money paid out
2 : an arrangement with a bank to hold money and keep records of transactions
3 : an arrangement for regular dealings with a business
4 : an arrangement in which a person uses the Internet or e-mail services of a particular company
5 : a statement of explanation or of reasons or causes You'll be asked to give an account of your actions.
6 : a statement of facts or events : report Give me an account of the game.
7 : worth entry 2 sense 1, importance It's of no account to them what I think.
on account of
: because of We cancelled on account of the rain.
on someone's account
: because of someone Don't stay on my account.

account

verb
accounted; accounting

Kids Definition of account (Entry 2 of 2)

: to think of as He accounted himself lucky.
account for
1 : to take into consideration She didn't account for extra costs.
2 : to give an explanation How do you account for your success?
3 : to be the cause of The flu accounts for many absences.
4 : to make up or form Women account for half the employees.

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account

noun
ac·​count

Legal Definition of account

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a record of debit and credit entries to cover transactions involving a particular item (as cash or notes receivable) or a particular person or concern
b : a statement of transactions during a fiscal period showing the resulting balance sometimes used in the pl. trustees filed annual accounts as required by statute— W. M. McGovern, Jr. et al.
2 : a periodically rendered reckoning (as one listing charged purchases and credits)
3 : a sum of money or its equivalent deposited in the common cash of a bank and subject to withdrawal at the option of the depositor
4 : a right under Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code to payment for goods or services which is not contained in an instrument or chattel paper and that may or may not have been earned by performance

Legal Definition of account (Entry 2 of 2)

: to give a financial account a duty to account

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More from Merriam-Webster on account

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for account

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with account

Spanish Central: Translation of account

Nglish: Translation of account for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of account for Arabic Speakers

Comments on account

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