of a rate of interest: equal to the rate of simple interest that yields the same amount when the interest is paid once at the end of the interest period as a quoted rate of interest does when calculated at compound interest over the same period compare nominalsense 4
These three words cover some overlapping territory.
Efficient most often describes what is capable of producing desired results without wasting materials, time, or energy. While the word can be applied to both people and things, it is far more commonly applied to things, such as machines, systems, processes, and organizations. The focus of the word is on how little is wasted or lost while the desired results are produced.
Effective typically describes things—such as policies, treatments, arguments, and techniques—that do what they are intended to do. People can also be described as effective when they accomplish what they set out to accomplish, but the word is far more often applied to things.
Proficient typically describes people, and it often is followed by the preposition at. If you are proficient at something, you are very good at it. You are, in fact, so good at doing it that you are unusually efficient when you do it. One can also be proficient in something, such as a language.
effective stresses the actual production of or the power to produce an effect.
an effective rebuttal
effectual suggests the accomplishment of a desired result especially as viewed after the fact.
the measures to stop the pilfering proved effectual
efficient suggests an acting or a potential for action or use in such a way as to avoid loss or waste of energy in effecting, producing, or functioning.
an efficient small car
efficacious suggests possession of a special quality or virtue that gives effective power.
a detergent that is efficacious in removing grease
Examples of effective in a Sentence
AdjectiveThese commercials were extremely effective as marketing tools, but we now know that chocolate swimming pools and candy-coating showers play no part in the manufacture of real M&M's. Instead, the ellipsoid chocolate centers of plain M&M's are formed by machines.—David Owen, Atlantic, October 1988My feeling is that by waiting for the right moment to let rip, a film is infinitely more effective, especially with characters you have come to like.—Clive Barker, in Cinefantastique, September 1987But Tammy's most effective remedy for stress, both then and now, was the same as Imelda Marcos's: shopping up a storm. "It's kind of a hobby to help my nerves," she explained …—Jean Seligman, Newsweek, 8 June 1987
It's a simple but effective technique.
He gave an effective speech.
Recent Examples on the Web
Both of these factors mitigate against effective deal-making.—Neil Senturia, San Diego Union-Tribune, 27 Nov. 2023 The Biden administration has been pressing lawmakers for AI regulation, but a polarized U.S. Congress has made little headway in passing effective regulation.—Reuters, NBC News, 27 Nov. 2023 Experts and local fact checkers said Chinese disinformation campaigns were a major concern in local elections in 2018; the efforts seemed less effective in 2020, when Ms. Tsai recaptured the presidency in a landslide.—Steven Lee Myers, New York Times, 26 Nov. 2023 Walmart customers confirm in their reviews that the multi-purpose gadget’s mop is effective, and good for an everyday wipe down, especially in kitchens and bathrooms.—Toni Sutton, Peoplemag, 26 Nov. 2023 Less effective are the occasional instances when Beyoncé resorts to cliché and metaphor to express the more nebulous ideas propelling her forward.—Angie Han, The Hollywood Reporter, 26 Nov. 2023 The refresher course on the basics gave him the foundation to be his old, effective self against the Ducks, who have lost five straight after a surprisingly good start.—Helene Elliott, Los Angeles Times, 25 Nov. 2023 Despite the potential side effects, glaucoma surgeries can be very effective in lowering eye pressure and preserving the optic nerve.—Amy Marturana Winderl, Cpt, Health, 25 Nov. 2023 Undeniably effective, this is the fiddly option, so best left to a professional to apply.—Hannah Coates, Vogue, 16 Nov. 2023
Such inhibitors also offer protective effectives for the heart and kidneys.—Byerin Prater, Fortune Well, 3 Oct. 2023 However, OBGYNs have previously told ABC News that countless studies have shown mifepristone to be safe and effectives.—Mary Kekatos, ABC News, 21 Apr. 2023 Eschenbach, 52, a partner at Sequoia Capital, replaces Chano Fernandez as co-CEO effective immediately, Workday said Tuesday in a statement.—Andrew Pollack, Bloomberg.com, 20 Dec. 2022 Kimberly Quirk will serve as interim president of the Richardson Chamber of Commerce effective immediately, the executive committee of the chamber stated in an announcement.—Teri Webster, Dallas News, 24 Feb. 2022 In May Bloomberg reported that Nonkululeko Nyembezi had been appointed as Chairman-designate effective.—Jasmine Browley, Essence, 11 Aug. 2022 The disarray resulted in Stephen Gange, Johns Hopkins University professor and executive vice provost for academic affairs, being named interim executive director of the program on Thursday effective immediately.—Sabrina Leboeuf, Baltimore Sun, 5 July 2022 In a major coup for the Big Ten Conference, both the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of Southern California (USC SC +2.7%) are jumping from the Pac 12 Conference to Big Ten effective with the 2024 season.—Derek Baine, Forbes, 1 July 2022 Laurent Morali, president of Kushner Cos., will take over as chief executive effective immediately, the firm said.—Peter Grant, WSJ, 19 Oct. 2021 See More
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'effective.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.
Middle English effectif, borrowed from Late Latin effectīvus "producing a result, efficient," going back to Latin, "involving an end product," from effectus, past participle of efficere "to make, bring about, produce, carry out" + -īvus-ive — more at effect entry 1
of a rate of interest: equal to the rate of simple interest that yields the same amount when the rate is paid once at the end of the interest period as a quoted rate of interest does when calculated at compound interest over the same period compare nominal