closely held


Definition of closely held

: having most stock shares and voting rights in the hands of a few a closely held business

Examples of closely held in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The identities of the jurors have been closely held, kept under seal by Judge T.S. Ellis III at Tuesday's conclusion of the high-profile trial. Chris Stirewalt, Fox News, "Report: Trump tabloid pal cut deal with feds," 24 Aug. 2018 The officials say that the identity of the source had been closely held at the highest levels of the FBI and intelligence community, and the individual has been a source for the FBI and CIA for years. Maegan Vazquez, CNN, "WSJ: Giuliani says Trump shouldn't talk to Mueller before getting information on FBI source," 20 May 2018 Hasbro, which ranks just behind closely held Lego in worldwide sales, suffered a 2 percent fourth-quarter drop, although full-year sales grew 3.8 percent. Carol Matlack,, "Toymakers struggle to crack the code of what kids want," 2 Apr. 2018 The negotiations have been closely held, but a resolution could arrive soon to avert the prospect of a grand jury subpoena, as happened to President Bill Clinton during Whitewater, or a lengthy court challenge reminiscent of the Watergate era. Washington Post, "No easy options for Trump lawyers handling interview request," 15 Mar. 2018 For 30 minutes or so, Pompeo would help Trump digest the country’s most closely held secrets about the world’s most pressing conflicts. Elizabeth Dias, Time, "Mike Pompeo Has What Rex Tillerson Didn't: 'Killer Graphics' and Trump's Trust," 13 Mar. 2018 But the process is usually closely held, making Dr. Dodd’s lawsuit a rare instance in which private grievances are being aired in the public domain. David W. Chen, New York Times, "Disability Led to Tenure Denial at City College, Lawsuit Claims," 5 Mar. 2018 Administration officials also have suggested that results of that investigation were closely held within the office. Robert Costa, Anchorage Daily News, "Kelly makes changes to White House security clearance process after abuse allegations against top aide," 16 Feb. 2018 Google also requires OTAs to give its webcrawlers access to proprietary information including room availability, descriptions, pricing and custom bundles and other data—information that OTAs typically keep closely held from competitors. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Google-Hotel Travelopoly," 28 Dec. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of closely held

1946, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about closely held

Statistics for closely held

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for closely held

The first known use of closely held was in 1946

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for closely held

closely held

close·​ly held | \ ˈklōs-lē-ˈheld\

Legal Definition of closely held

: having most stock shares and corporate voting rights in the hands of a few shareholders

More from Merriam-Webster on closely held

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with closely held

Comments on closely held

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


highly pertinent or appropriate

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Time Traveler Quiz: Which Word Came First?

  • time traveler quiz which word came first
  • Which came first?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!