free enterprise


Definition of free enterprise

: freedom of private business to organize and operate for profit in a competitive system without interference by government beyond regulation necessary to protect public interest and keep the national economy in balance

Examples of free enterprise in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Corcoran spoke about the meaning of free enterprise, private land ownership and complaints there are too many businesses in too few categories within the city. Linda Gandee, cleveland, "North Ridgeville mayor answers questions on business mix in the city," 22 Sep. 2020 Once the Allies were victorious, America launched a postwar effort to export our values of freedom, democracy, the rule of law, due process, and free enterprise. Maurice R. Greenberg, WSJ, "Don’t Squander Our Victory Over Tyranny," 9 Sep. 2020 In their choice between defending free enterprise and making nice on the cocktail circuit, the drinks are winning. Kimberley A. Strassel, WSJ, "Chamber of Errors," 3 Sep. 2020 For economic conservatives, the country was said to be proving the virtues of capitalism and free enterprise (never mind its enormous state enterprises). James Mann, Washington Post, "A Wuhan writer, on the ground at the center of the outbreak," 2 July 2020 Just try to find a show that better promotes that most sacred of conservative American values — free enterprise. Hank Stuever, Washington Post, "Netflix’s fresh take on ‘The Baby-Sitters Club’ celebrates the best qualities of a new generation," 2 July 2020 Such ideas held sway until Chinese Communist Party leader Xi Jinping came to power in 2012 and made abundantly clear that China was headed for neither free enterprise nor a free press nor any other sort of political change. James Mann, Washington Post, "A Wuhan writer, on the ground at the center of the outbreak," 2 July 2020 Signatories included the American Association of Airport Executives, the Security Industry Association, and NetChoice, a trade group dedicated to free enterprise on the internet. Nicolás Rivero, Quartz, "The organizations positioned to lobby against a US ban on facial recognition," 1 July 2020 Byron McCauley is a columnist writing about the intersection of race, politics, social justice and free enterprise. Byron Mccauley,, "French Crust Cafe and Bistro: Did Jean-Robert de Cavel's restaurant manager show bias against Black man?," 16 June 2020

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

1890, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for free enterprise

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The first known use of free enterprise was in 1890

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Statistics for free enterprise

Last Updated

28 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Free enterprise.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for free enterprise

free enterprise


English Language Learners Definition of free enterprise

: a system in which private businesses are able to compete with each other with little control by the government

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