account

noun
ac·​count | \ ə-ˈkau̇nt \

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 acccount
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 for couldn't account for the loss
2a : to be the sole or primary factor used with for The left fielder accounted for all three putouts.
b : to bring about the capture, death, or destruction of something used with for Enemy 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

Her skill and pizzazz during the collegiate-level competition earned her a perfect 10 score, and to date, more than 33.9 million views via the @UCLAGymnastics Twitter account, which shared a clip of the crowd-riling performance. Jenny Mccoy, SELF, "5 Things to Know About Katelyn Ohashi, the UCLA Gymnast Whose Floor Routine Just Went Viral," 15 Jan. 2019 Facebook was able to link these accounts to the Myanmar military in a number of ways. Kurt Wagner, Recode, "Facebook removed hundreds more accounts linked to the Myanmar military for posting hate speech and attacks against ethnic minorities," 19 Dec. 2018 While phonemes help convey meaning, speech-recognition software does not account for unintended repetitions of them, according to Rudzicz. Kevin Wheeler, Curbed, "Why voice assistants don’t understand people who stutter," 12 Dec. 2018 While these two stories were brought to life on the big screen, their creators are hoping that these accounts go beyond the box office and affect the community IRL. Megan Lasher, Seventeen, "What Is Conversion Therapy?," 20 Nov. 2018 The student who wrote this account could not be reached on Wednesday. Yanan Wang, The Seattle Times, "Missing elite Chinese university alumni spark outcry," 14 Nov. 2018 The fourth season of Outlander is just weeks away at this point, and so the show's social media accounts have been posting behind-the-scenes videos with the stars of the series to get fans through this last bit of Droughtlander. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Watch Outlander's Caitriona Balfe Do a Hilarious Impression of Her Co-Star Sam Heughan," 15 Oct. 2018 Above: These two accounts often tweet the same content. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Social Media Crime Fighters at FireEye Are Helping Facebook Find Fake Accounts," 12 Oct. 2018 According to some of the accounts, the scheme began to unravel when the team made its way to Abassan. Fares Akram, The Seattle Times, "Palestinians offer new details of Israel’s botched Gaza raid," 12 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Penelope, Dream, Stormi, and True—only account for five purses. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kylie Jenner's 11-Month-Old Daughter Stormi Webster Owns a Mini Louis Vuitton Bag Now," 9 Jan. 2019 Foreign markets account for slightly more than half of Brown-Forman’s overall sales. Bruce Schreiner, The Seattle Times, "Brown-Forman posts higher earnings in fiscal 2nd quarter," 5 Dec. 2018 Drug overdoses account for slightly less than half of the deaths in this category. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "US life expectancy continues to move in reverse," 29 Nov. 2018 Taken together, these factors account for up to half of the risks for the disease, according to a 2011 review in Lancet Neurology. Linda Marsa, Discover Magazine, "A New Treatment for Alzheimer's? It Starts With Lifestyle," 16 Nov. 2018 In his experience, about 20 percent of products from a brand usually account for 80 percent of sales. Diana Budds, Curbed, "Is America ready for Denmark’s coolest design brand?," 1 Nov. 2018 African-Americans account for nearly 73 percent of lynching cases, with the majority of cases taking place in the South. Willie James Inman, Fox News, "Reopening of 1940 Elbert Williams case part of national effort to bring justice to civil rights heroes," 17 Aug. 2018 Subscriptions currently account for about two-thirds of the company’s revenue. Rani Molla, Recode, "The ‘Trump bump’ in the New York Times’ digital news subscription growth is over," 9 Aug. 2018 American women account for 40 percent of Americans struggling with hair thinning or loss. Kaleigh Fasanella, Allure, "Can Castor Oil Help Your Hair Grow? We Asked the Experts," 19 July 2018

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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Learn More about account

Statistics for account

Last Updated

20 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for account

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

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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

English Language Learners Definition of account

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a record of money that has been paid and money that has been received

accounts : 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)

: 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

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with account

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for 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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