ex·​pen·​di·​ture | \ ik-ˈspen-di-chər How to pronounce expenditure (audio) , -də-ˌchu̇r, -də-ˌt(y)u̇r\

Definition of expenditure

1 : the act or process of expending an expenditure of energy
2 : something expended : disbursement, expense income should exceed expenditures

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Synonyms for expenditure


charge, cost, disbursement, expense, outgo, outlay

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Examples of expenditure in a Sentence

an increase in military expenditures an increase in military expenditure vast expenditures of time and effort The energy expenditure was significant. the expenditure of funds for the new school The project will require an expenditure of effort on everyone's part.
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Recent Examples on the Web

WASHINGTON—Trade disputes with China and other countries have led American businesses to cut back on capital expenditures and other spending, a new survey found. William Mauldin, WSJ, "Tariff Fears Led U.S. Manufacturers to Trim Spending," 26 Feb. 2019 The organization’s independent expenditure committee funneled more than $37 million in the 2018 election cycle alone. Rebecca Gale, Marie Claire, "Elise Stefanik Is Going to Bring Women Back to the GOP," 25 Mar. 2019 South Milwaukee is looking to make a total expenditure of $5,745,000 to undertake a number of projects in the city’s project plan. Erik S. Hanley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "South Milwaukee looking to spend $6 million to revitalize portions of downtown, former Bucyrus property," 27 June 2018 The expenditure then authorized for a case concerning $20,000 worth of campaign contributions? $100,000. Fox News, "Dad of Parkland victim reacts to release of shooter's videos," 1 June 2018 The social-network giant plans to shell out between $18 billion and $20 billion in capital expenditures this year compared with about $14 billion last year—a 36% jump at the midpoint. Dan Gallagher, WSJ, "Hey, Big Spender: Tech Cash Will Keep Flowing," 11 Feb. 2019 Figures for 2017 are estimated, and forecasted for 2018 Source: R&D Magazine (expenditure); Center for Strategic and International Studies; Global Innovation Index (innovation); SAFE Balance of Payment via. Bob Davis, WSJ, "How China Systematically Pries Technology From U.S. Companies," 26 Sep. 2018 State legislative hearings, and the meetings of school boards and city councils, nearly always allow public comment, especially when the expenditure of public money is being discussed. Craig Harris, azcentral, "East Valley charter, subject of Republic investigation, reverses itself after blocking public comment," 14 July 2018 The most likely threat to McDonnell had appeared to come from Lindsey, a retired sheriff’s commander who raised $330,000 and was supported by $410,000 in additional funds from an independent expenditure committee. Maya Lau, latimes.com, "A historic election shock gives a longshot the chance to topple L.A. County Sheriff Jim McDonnell," 3 July 2018

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

1769, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for expenditure

irregular from expend

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Statistics for expenditure

Last Updated

21 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for expenditure

The first known use of expenditure was in 1769

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More Definitions for expenditure



English Language Learners Definition of expenditure

: an amount of money that is spent on something
: an amount of time, energy, effort, etc., that is used to do something
: the act of spending money


ex·​pen·​di·​ture | \ ik-ˈspen-di-chər How to pronounce expenditure (audio) \

Kids Definition of expenditure

1 : the act of spending (as money, time, or energy)
2 : something that is spent Keep a record of your expenditures.


ex·​pen·​di·​ture | \ ik-ˈspen-di-chər, -ˌchu̇r How to pronounce expenditure (audio) \

Legal Definition of expenditure

1 : the act or process of paying out
2 : something paid out — see also capital expenditure

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Comments on expenditure

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


one that collects or salvages junk

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