bot·​tom-line | \ ˈbä-təm-ˌlīn How to pronounce bottom-line (audio) \

Definition of bottom-line

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : concerned only with cost or profits

bottom line


Definition of bottom line (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the essential or salient point : crux
b : the primary or most important consideration
2a : the line at the bottom of a financial report that shows the net profit or loss
b : financial considerations (such as cost or profit or loss)
c : the final result

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Other Words from bottom-line


bottom-liner \ ˈbä-​təm-​ˌlī-​nər How to pronounce bottom line (audio) \ noun, chiefly US, often disparaging

Examples of bottom-line in a Sentence

Noun If our flight is late, we will miss our connection. That's the bottom line. A student with special needs can stress a school's budget, but the bottom line is that the state must provide for the child's education. How will these changes affect our bottom line? He's always got his eye on the bottom line. He says his bottom line is $120,000.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The bottom line is that the Blazers (3-3) need Nurkic to return to form in order to become better than average. oregonlive, "Portland Trail Blazers vs. Chicago Bulls: Game preview, time, TV channel, how to watch free live stream online," 5 Jan. 2021 The bottom line is that investors in banks have more to think about than, say, higher capital requirements. Telis Demos, WSJ, "Biden Administration Could Unsettle Banks in More Than One Way," 4 Jan. 2021 The bottom line is the rules of the House ought to reflect the reality here. Kerry Picket, Washington Examiner, "Democrats defend gender-neutral pronoun rule," 3 Jan. 2021 The bottom line is that the U.K. will continue trading relatively freely with the European Union, avoiding the economic disruption that would come by falling back on WTO rules in a disorderly exit. The Editors, National Review, "Britain’s Brexit Triumph," 31 Dec. 2020 Lines are everywhere in this book, but the bottom line is hard to find. Washington Post, "When ‘red lines’ work, and when they fail," 31 Dec. 2020 Like it or not, the bottom line is that in politics, loyalty is the coin of the realm and needs to be rewarded. Willie Brown,, "Willie Brown: Loyalty has its perks. Just ask Alex Padilla," 26 Dec. 2020 The bottom line is the Heat led by double figures for Friday’s final 5:32. Ira Winderman,, "ASK IRA: Does veteran savvy set Heat bench apart?," 26 Dec. 2020 But the bottom line is that since returning from the reserve/COVID-19 list, Jackson has strung together three games reminiscent of his 2019 Most Valuable Player campaign. Childs Walker,, "Five Things We Learned from the Ravens’ 40-14 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars," 21 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bottom-line.' 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 bottom-line


1968, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1830, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for bottom-line

Time Traveler

The first known use of bottom-line was in 1830

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Cite this Entry

“Bottom-line.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for bottom-line

bottom line


English Language Learners Definition of bottom line

: the most important part of something : the most important thing to consider
: the final result or outcome
: a company's profits or losses

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bottom-line

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