bro·​ker | \ˈbrō-kər \

Definition of broker 

1 : one who acts as an intermediary: such as

a : an agent who arranges marriages

b : an agent who negotiates contracts of purchase and sale (as of real estate, commodities, or securities)

3 : one who sells or distributes something an information broker

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Other Words from broker

broker verb

Synonyms & Antonyms for broker


dealer, merchandiser, seller, vendor (also vender)


buyer, purchaser

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Examples of broker in a Sentence

the broker in the hostage situation was a prominent reporter that the gunman felt he could trust all of the local yacht brokers were at the boat show

Recent Examples on the Web

The buildings and the layout of the area weren’t particularly pedestrian friendly or walkable, with many of the property entrances connected to garages rather than the street, brokers and analysts said. Keiko Morris, WSJ, "Crystal City Properties Were a Bust. Then Amazon Came Calling.," 6 Nov. 2018 Shaken by the experience, the apparel broker and his wife put their home on the market weeks later. Jennifer Peltz, Fox News, "'Wake-up call': 9/11 prompted some to move away to new lives," 10 Sep. 2018 Data brokers are firms that collect personal information about consumers and sell it to marketers and other businesses. NBC News, "Facebook releases new privacy safeguards on how advertisers handle data," 13 June 2018 The rules require ad brokers like Google to provide information to the public about who is funding political ads and how those ads are being targeted. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "New law forces Google to suspend political ads in Washington state," 7 June 2018 Rolando Leal, McElroy’s business partner and Square Foot’s managing broker, said in a phone interview afterward that there are no firm plans for the properties yet. . Guillermo Contreras, San Antonio Express-News, "Barber shops, real estate seized from drug ring auctioned for $1.4 million," 11 July 2018 Listing broker Daniel Gale Sotheby’s International Realty For weekly email updates on residential real estate news, sign up here. New York Times, "Homes That Sold for Around $1,500,000," 8 July 2018 This feature is intended primarily for residential brokers, who will be given preference, but pieces about commercial real estate will also be accepted as space allows. Donna Bloom, miamiherald, "In 50 years of Miami real estate, I’ve seen these five big changes," 29 June 2018 In 2012, Colello started crediting one broker, Shain, for matching buyers and sellers who had actually gone directly to the state to complete their deals. Ted Sickinger,, "Martin Shain pleads guilty to tax evasion in Oregon tax credit case," 16 May 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for broker

Middle English, negotiator, from Anglo-French brocour

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Learn More about broker

Statistics for broker

Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for broker

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

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More Definitions for broker



Financial Definition of broker

What It Is

A broker is a person or a company that acts as an intermediary between buyers and sellers. Brokers exist not just in the financial markets, but in the real estate market, the commodities market, the art market -- even the boat market.

How It Works

Brokers are often paid a commission, which is a percentage of the customer's purchase or sale price, though some receive a flat fee per transaction or a mix of the two.

There are many types of brokers in the financial world. For example, a commodities broker specializes in trading commodities, a floor broker handles orders on the floor of a stock or commodities exchange and a full-service broker offers brokerage services and sells other financial products such as insurance, tax planning or research conducted by other members of the brokerage firm. A discount broker essentially executes trades on behalf of customers and does little else. Brokers are not the same as research analysts, who analyze and make recommendations about certain stocks.

In the financial world, brokers must have Series 7 and Series 63 licenses; other licenses are often required for specific types of brokers. For example, some brokers must also obtain a Series 3 license if they want to trade certain financial products such as futures and commodities. To obtain a Series 7 license, the applicant must pass the Series 7 exam (also called the Qualification Examination for General Securities Representative), which primarily covers the seven critical functions performed by registered representatives: seek business for the broker/dealer, evaluate customer needs and objectives, advise clients, manage customer accounts and account records, explain the securities markets and the factors that affect them, execute orders for clients and monitor client portfolios. The National Association of Securities Dealers administers the test.

Why It Matters

Brokers are some of the most important people in any market because they bring buyers and sellers together and thus create liquidity and efficiency in the market.

However, investors should remember that broker commissions eat into returns, so investors should shop for a broker that provides an appropriate level of service. For instance, the extra cost of a full-service broker may be worth it for people who don't have the knowledge or inclination to stay on top of complicated investing or financial planning. Likewise, new investors or those with complex portfolios might find more comfort in full-service brokers. Investors who hold their investments for a long time are usually less bothered by higher trading commissions because they don't trade that often.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of broker

: a person who helps other people to reach agreements, to make deals, or to buy and sell property (such as stocks or houses)


bro·​ker | \ˈbrō-kər \

Kids Definition of broker

: a person who acts as an agent for others in the buying or selling of property

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bro·​ker | \ˈbrō-kər \

Legal Definition of broker 

: an agent who negotiates contracts of sale (as of real estate or securities) or other agreements (as insurance contracts or mortgages) between the parties for a fee or commission — compare dealer, finder

Note: An insurance broker differs from an insurance agent in that a broker is usually considered an agent of the insured, even though he or she may receive a commission from an insurance company. A broker may sell the products of a number of insurers, and an insurer has no liability for a broker's wrongful actions. A securities broker often acts also as a dealer and so is often referred to as a broker-dealer.

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Comments on broker

What made you want to look up broker? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


something that serves to warn or remind

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