gain

noun
\ ˈgān How to pronounce gain (audio) \

Definition of gain

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : resources or advantage acquired or increased : profit made substantial gains last year
2 : the act or process of acquiring something
3a : an increase in amount, magnitude, or degree a gain in efficiency
b : the increase (as of voltage or signal intensity) caused by an amplifier especially : the ratio of output over input
c : the signal-gathering ability of an antenna

gain

verb
gained; gaining; gains

Definition of gain (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to acquire or get possession of usually by industry, merit, or craft gain an advantage he stood to gain a fortune
b : to win in competition or conflict the troops gained enemy territory
c(1) : to arrive at : reach, attain gained the river that night
(2) : traverse, cover gained 10 yards on the play
d : to get by a natural development or process gain strength
e : to establish a specific relationship with gain a friend
2a : to make an increase of (a specified amount) gained three percent in the past month
b : to increase in (a particular quality) gain momentum
3 : to win to one's side : persuade gain adherents to a cause
4 : to cause to be obtained or given : attract gain attention
5 of a timepiece : to run fast by the amount of the clock gains a minute a day

intransitive verb

1 : to get advantage : profit hoped to gain by the deal
2a : increase the day was gaining in warmth
b : to increase in weight
c : to improve in health or ability
3 of a timepiece : to run fast
4 : to get closer to something pursued usually used with on or upon
gain ground
: to make progress

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Other Words from gain

Verb

gainer noun

Examples of gain in a Sentence

Noun

The medication can cause nausea and weight gain. attributed her recent weight gain to the medication she was taking

Verb

They stand to gain an advantage over their competitors by getting an early start. What do you hope to gain from this? gain control of the territory Investigators are trying to gain access to the group's financial records. We were unable to gain admission to the club. We need to gain a better understanding of the problem. They had nothing to lose and everything to gain. He first gained attention as a young writer. Her theories are slowly gaining acceptance. I took the job to gain experience.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

That's after gasoline distributors adjust prices to match gains in futures and regional spot markets. Bloomberg News, oregonlive, "U.S. gas prices could top $3/gallon after Saudi oil attack," 17 Sep. 2019 Still, Rystad sees the U.S. leading global production growth for years to come with gains in technology, efficiency and ample shale acreage yet to be drilled as new pipelines and export terminals come online. Jordan Blum, Houston Chronicle, "U.S. shale oil to peak in 2030 after huge growth: Rystad report," 13 Sep. 2019 Despite modest gains in fuel efficiency, domestic airlines continue to pump larger and larger quantities of planet-warming pollution into the atmosphere. Maxine Joselow, Scientific American, "Rising Emissions Overshadow Airlines’ Fuel Efficiency Gains," 12 Sep. 2019 With recent gains in its stock price, Apple has rejoined the ranks of companies with a market value over $1 trillion. Aaron Pressman, Fortune, "The Gig Economy Is Under Attack, But Not for the First Time—Data Sheet," 12 Sep. 2019 Rookie Trayvon Mullen watched as Sanders got past him for a 53-yard gain in the fourth quarter. Jerry Mcdonald, The Mercury News, "Raiders report card: Big night for Jon Gruden, Derek Carr, defense," 11 Sep. 2019 But temporarily crippling Social Security's workhorse revenue producer, the payroll tax, simply to provide a boost to consumer spending would amount to short-term gains in exchange for long-term pain. Sean Williams, USA TODAY, "Trump's latest idea could put Social Security in a serious bind," 6 Sep. 2019 Their first collaboration advances with a 7% percent gain in sales (a little over 2,000 downloads sold) in the week ending Aug. 29. Pamela Bustios, Billboard, "Ozuna Notches 13th No. 1 On Latin Airplay Chart With 'Te Soñé De Nuevo'," 5 Sep. 2019 Kellogg is seeking to offset declines in cereal sales with gains in snacks and frozen foods. Bloomberg News, al, "Incogmeato? Kellogg’s Morningstar Farms to sell its own plant-based imitation burger," 4 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Palmer had gained national attention for sympathizing with the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge occupiers that year. oregonlive, "Case Closed: In Oregon campaign investigations, ‘I did not’ is all it takes," 17 Sep. 2019 Because some tissue samples from patients have turned up immune cells full of fats, or lipids, a diagnosis of lipoid pneumonia has gained favor among physicians, especially because vitamin E acetate, the only candidate put forward, is a lipid. Emily Willingham, Scientific American, "Hunt for Cause of Vaping Illness Suggests Multiple Mechanisms of Damage," 17 Sep. 2019 While much of the early momentum the Terps had gained with their one-sided blowouts of Howard and then-No. Don Markus, baltimoresun.com, "Maryland football building for future as Phase II of $196 million Cole Field House project heads to goal line," 16 Sep. 2019 Mundelein has gained ground with its physical running game. Steve Reaven, chicagotribune.com, "Football notebook: Lake Forest shuts out Mundelein, gets back on track," 15 Sep. 2019 The bill has gained bipartisan support from lawmakers who say companies like CRRC pose a threat to the United States. New York Times, "Fearing ‘Spy Trains,’ Congress May Ban a Chinese Maker of Subway Cars," 14 Sep. 2019 Loeb has gained notoriety in recent memory for suggesting that interstellar object Oumuaua is an extraterrestrial probe. Fox News, "Universe might be 2 billion years younger, shocking study says," 14 Sep. 2019 Redshirt senior running back Nashon Ellerbe has gained 106 yards on only 14 carries. Nick Moyle, Houston Chronicle, "College football preview: No. 12 Texas at Rice," 13 Sep. 2019 Watford gained their first points of the season with a deserved draw at St James' Park after a shocking start to the season. SI.com, "Watford vs Arsenal: Where to Watch, Buy Tickets, Live Stream, Kick Off Time & Team News," 12 Sep. 2019

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for gain

Noun

Middle English gain, borrowed from Anglo-French gain, gaigne, gaaing "tillage, winning, profit," derivative of gaainer, gaaigner "to till, secure (profit, advantage)" — more at gain entry 2

Note: See note at gain entry 2.

Verb

Middle English gaynen "to prevail against," borrowed from Anglo-French gaainer, gaaigner "to cultivate, till, secure (profit, advantage), capture, acquire, be victorious," going back to Old Low Franconian *waiđanjan, of uncertain meaning and origin

Note: The presumed Old Low Franconian verb *waiđanjan has no exact counterpart in neighboring Germanic languages, and given the diverse meanings of the French verb, hypotheses that explain it are all somewhat tenuous. The base has traditionally been taken to be that of Old High German weida "pasture," Old Saxon weiđa, from which a verb meaning "to pasture" was derived, which then hypothetically developed the sense "to cultivate, till" and further derived senses. Alternatively, the verb could be linked to Old High German weidenōn "to hunt," a derivative of weida "hunt, quantity of game taken, catch" (corresponding to Old English wāth "hunt, chase, wandering," Old Norse veiðr "catch, haul of fish"). In Middle English both the noun and verb are presumed to have crossed with borrowings of Old Norse gagn "advantage, victory." Early Modern English gain has acquired senses directly from Middle French and French gagner.

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Dictionary Entries near gain

Gaillard

gaillardia

gaily

gain

gaincope

gaine

Gaines

Statistics for gain

Last Updated

15 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for gain

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

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More Definitions for gain

gain

noun

Financial Definition of gain

What It Is

A gain, also called a capital gain, is an increase in the value of an investment. It is the difference between the purchase price (the basis) and the sale price of an asset. Thus the formula for gain is:

Sale Price - Purchase Price = Gain

Note that this formula assumes the sale price is higher than the purchase price. If an investor sells an asset for less than he or she paid, this is called a loss.

How It Works

Let's assume you purchase 100 shares of Company XYZ for $1 per share. After three months, the share price increases to $5. This means the value of the investment has increased from $100 to $500, for a gain of $400.

Why It Matters

Gains are taxable, but only when they are realized. That is, they only become taxable when the asset is sold. Until that point, any gains are considered unrealized and are not taxable. The IRS considers nearly every asset owned by individuals and companies as capital assets and thus subject to capital gains taxes.

Taxpayers report capital gains on IRS Schedule D, but these gains are subject to different tax rates depending on whether they are short-term or long-term (and in some cases depending on the type of asset). In the example above, if you sold the Company XYZ shares after a year, the IRS would consider your $400 profit a long-term capital gain and tax it at one of several flat rates. However, if you sold the Company XYZ shares after just three months, the IRS would consider your $400 profit a short-term capital gain and tax that $400 at your ordinary income tax rate, which varies by several factors, including which state you live in, and is generally higher than the long-term capital gains tax rate. This system encourages long-term investing, but there are still many logical reasons an investor might want to sell an asset before a year has passed.

Some retirement vehicles, such as 401(k)s and IRAs, allow investors to buy and sell assets within these vehicles without becoming subject to capital gains tax. This tax deferral effectively gives investors a larger balance on which to compound interest or returns, with capital gains tax applying only when the investor begins to make withdrawals.

An investor's capital losses sometimes will offset all or a portion of his or her capital gains, lowering the investor's tax bill. There is a limit, however, to how much the investor can offset. Note also that the IRS does not treat the distributions of net realized long-term capital gains, like those from a mutual fund, for example, as capital gains. The IRS treats those as ordinary dividends.

Source: Investing Answers

gain

noun

English Language Learners Definition of gain

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something wanted or valued that is gotten : something that is gained especially : money gotten through some activity or process
: something that is helpful : advantage or benefit
: an increase in amount, size, or number

gain

verb

English Language Learners Definition of gain (Entry 2 of 2)

: to get (something wanted or valued)
: to win (something) in a competition, battle, etc.
: to gradually get (something) or more of (something) as time passes

gain

noun
\ ˈgān How to pronounce gain (audio) \

Kids Definition of gain

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something valuable or desirable that is obtained or acquired : profit financial gains
2 : an increase in amount, size, or degree

gain

verb
gained; gaining

Kids Definition of gain (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to get or win often by effort You gain knowledge by study. He exercised to gain strength.
2 : to get or acquire in a natural or gradual way He gained ten pounds.
3 : to increase in The car gained speed.
4 : to get to : reach The swimmer gained the shore.
5 : to get an advantage : profit We all gained from the lesson.

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\ ˈgān How to pronounce gain (audio) \

Medical Definition of gain

: to improve in health the patient gained daily

gain

noun

Legal Definition of gain

1 : an increase in value, capital, or amount — compare loss
capital gain
: a gain realized on the sale or exchange of a capital asset (as a stock or real estate)
casualty gain
: a gain realized by an insured because property insurance benefits paid for a loss from a casualty or theft are greater than the adjusted value of the insured asset
long-term capital gain
: a capital gain realized on the sale or exchange of an asset held for more than a specified period (as a year)
ordinary gain
: a gain from the exchange or sale of an asset that is not capital
short-term capital gain
: a capital gain realized on the sale or exchange of an asset held for less than a specified period (as a year) that is treated as ordinary income under federal income tax laws
2  plural, in the civil law of Louisiana : a class of community property that reflects the increase in property value contributed by the common skill or labor of the spouses

Other Words from gain

gain verb

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More from Merriam-Webster on gain

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with gain

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for gain

Spanish Central: Translation of gain

Nglish: Translation of gain for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gain for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about gain

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