in·​come | \ ˈin-ˌkəm How to pronounce income (audio) also ˈin-kəm or ˈiŋ-kəm \

Definition of income

1 : a gain or recurrent benefit usually measured in money that derives from capital or labor also : the amount of such gain received in a period of time has an income of $30,000 a year
2 : a coming in : entrance, influx fluctuations in the nutrient income of a body of water

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Examples of income in a Sentence

Any income from investments must be reported. Farming is his main source of income. Even on two incomes, we're having a hard time keeping up with our bills. He earns a good income as a consultant. What was the company's annual income?
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Recent Examples on the Web For at-home diners who still have disposable income, eating oysters can be a way to support local businesses with environmental advantages. Melody Schreiber, The New Republic, "Can Oysters Save Our Seas?," 6 Jan. 2021 Overall, almost everyone in the bottom 80% of the income distribution in the U.S. will receive a check, according to the Tax Foundation's estimate. Aimee Picchi, CBS News, "Second stimulus check: Who won't be getting a $600 check?," 6 Jan. 2021 Delta Air Lines posted a $5.3-billion net loss in the third quarter of 2020, compared with $1.5 billion in net income in the third period of 2019. Hugo Martín, Los Angeles Times, "Airlines call for COVID testing for all international travelers to the U.S.," 5 Jan. 2021 And business remains tough, with revenues falling 20% to $8.75 billion and net income diving 39% to $1.07 billion in the third quarter. Adam Shell, USA TODAY, "Disney, AutoZone and PayPal are among 21 stocks you should consider buying in 2021, stock experts say," 5 Jan. 2021 The United States remains the most unequal high-income economy in the world. Aric Jenkins, Fortune, "Happy New Year! Nothing is going to change," 5 Jan. 2021 The payments drop $5 for every $100 in income over that threshold. Leada Gore |, al, "IRS Get My Payment: $600 stimulus tracking tool now live," 4 Jan. 2021 There is also a $600 payment for each child for families who meet those income requirements. New York Times, "As the Virus Spikes, Vaccine Distribution Is One More Hurdle for States," 3 Jan. 2021 Some of the top-level performers are paid by venues — which is why bar closures were so difficult — but audience tips make up a significant piece of a drag queen’s income. Dallas News, "‘It’s a struggle’: How Dallas’ drag queens are making it work in the COVID-19 pandemic," 3 Jan. 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Time Traveler for income

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for income

Last Updated

12 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Income.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for income


How to pronounce income (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of income

: money that is earned from work, investments, business, etc.


in·​come | \ ˈin-ˌkəm How to pronounce income (audio) \

Kids Definition of income

: a gain usually in money that comes in from labor, business, or property



Legal Definition of income

: a gain or recurrent benefit usually measured in money that derives from capital or labor also : the amount of such gain received in a period of time an income of $20,000 a year

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Comments on income

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