instability

noun
in·​sta·​bil·​i·​ty | \ ˌin(t)-stə-ˈbi-lə-tē How to pronounce instability (audio) \

Definition of instability

: the quality or state of being unstable especially : lack of emotional or mental stability

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Examples of instability in a Sentence

Investors are worried about the current instability of the stock market. The patient has a history of emotional instability.

Recent Examples on the Web

Following the overthrow of Kwame Nkrumah’s government in 1966, the country suffered nearly two decades of political instability and economic decline. Priscilla Twumasi-baffour, Quartz Africa, "Many Ghanaians think their country should divorce the IMF—that isn’t likely to happen," 8 July 2019 View Sample Sign Up Now Hong Kong people may be frustrated but there has never been much appetite for instability and disruptions. Christine Loh, Time, "Hong Kong Needs a Deep Dialogue of Reconciliation In Order to Move Forward," 5 July 2019 Air stays stable The recipe for thunderstorms calls for three ingredients – moisture, instability and a lift in the air from lower levels of the atmosphere. Meg Jones, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Yeah, we know it's been cold and rainy in Wisconsin. Blame the jet stream.," 17 June 2019 The tunes, often in support or protest of a movement, give shape to the way that music tells the history of America as much as wars, economic instability and social agitation do. Melinda Newman, Billboard, "Tim McGraw & Jon Meacham on Writing 'Songs of America' and What We Can Learn From Our Musical Past," 11 June 2019 First established in 1956 to study Earth’s atmosphere, the station has been moved several times due to ice instability and movement. Jill Kiedaisch, Popular Mechanics, "Iceberg Twice the Size of Manhattan Soon to Break Free of Antarctic Shelf," 8 Apr. 2019 Poverty and environmental fragility have in turn exacerbated political instability. Robert Draper, National Geographic, "Surrounded by chaos, Niger is a nation on the edge," 17 June 2019 Global investors are increasingly flocking to South America, which some investing experts say saw a turning point in 2018 despite the political instability in countries like Venezuela. Theodore Schleifer, Vox, "You probably haven’t heard of Nubank. But it could be a $10 billion company, so you should.," 6 June 2019 European Union elections threatened a fresh stage of political instability in the bloc, with results in many countries signaling disillusion with the establishment and polarization among voters. Stephen Fidler, WSJ, "European Elections Deepen Divisions in National Capitals," 27 May 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near instability

inspoken

in sport

inst

instability

instable

in stages

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Statistics for instability

Last Updated

14 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for instability

The first known use of instability was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for instability

instability

noun

English Language Learners Definition of instability

: the state of being likely to change
: the tendency to change your behavior very quickly or to react to things in an extremely emotional way

instability

noun
in·​sta·​bil·​i·​ty | \ ˌin-stə-ˈbi-lə-tē How to pronounce instability (audio) \

Kids Definition of instability

: the quality or state of being unstable

instability

noun
in·​sta·​bil·​i·​ty | \ ˌin(t)-stə-ˈbil-ət-ē How to pronounce instability (audio) \
plural instabilities

Medical Definition of instability

: the quality or state of being unstable especially : lack of emotional or mental stability

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Comments on instability

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