inversion

noun
in·​ver·​sion | \in-ˈvər-zhən, -shən\
plural inversions

Definition of inversion 

1 : a reversal of position, order, form, or relationship: such as

a(1) : a change in normal word order especially : the placement of a verb before its subject

(2) : the process or result of changing or reversing the relative positions of the notes of a musical interval, chord, or phrase

b : the condition of being turned inward or inside out

c : a breaking off of a chromosome section and its subsequent reattachment in inverted position also : a chromosomal section that has undergone this process

2 : the act or process of inverting

3a : a change in the order of the terms of a mathematical proportion effected by inverting each ratio

b : the operation of forming the inverse of a magnitude, a function, an operation, or an element

4a : the conversion of dextrorotatory sucrose into a levorotatory mixture of glucose and fructose

b : a change from one stereochemical figuration at a chiral center in a usually organic molecule to the opposite configuration that is brought about by a reaction in which a substitution of one group is made for a different group

5 : an increase of temperature with height through a layer of air

6 : a corporate reorganization in which a U.S. corporation merges with or acquires a foreign corporation and restructures the U.S. corporation as a subsidiary of the newly created multinational company for the purpose of establishing a domicile in a foreign country and taking advantage of the country's corporate tax structure U.S. businesses are buying foreign companies in countries with lower tax rates so they can switch their legal home and cut their tax bills. The process, known as inversion, is the hottest trend in mergers and acquisitions, driving some of the biggest takeovers this year.— Tom Fairless and Shayndi Raice

7 dated : homosexuality also : identification with the gender role of the opposite sex

Examples of inversion in a Sentence

an inversion of the roles of parent and child Inversion of the two words changes the meaning of the sentence.

Recent Examples on the Web

Climbing to the top of the first loop, the train navigates a slow barrel roll at nearly 150 feet in the air that ranks as one of the world's tallest inversions. Brady Macdonald, sandiegouniontribune.com, "SeaWorld’s Electric Eel coaster squeezes a lot of excitement into a tight space," 10 May 2018 The next evening, after a day kayaking and swimming on Tortuga Bay, with marine iguanas, sea turtles and more reef sharks, Kristin focused the class on inversions. Jill Gleeson, Woman's Day, "I Hate Yoga—But That Didn't Stop Me from Attending a Yoga Retreat in the Galapagos Islands," 4 Apr. 2017 An inversion of the curve—when short-term yields rise above long-term yields—has almost always been followed by a recession within a year or two. Nick Timiraos, WSJ, "What to Watch in the Federal Reserve’s June Meeting Minutes," 5 July 2018 Once the fireworks emissions wane, regulators are warning that record high temperatures and strong inversion layers forecast for this weekend threaten to produce unusually poor air quality for several more days. Jon Schleuss, latimes.com, "The Fourth of July brings some of the year's worst air pollution. You can thank fireworks," 3 July 2018 In addition to Fresno, take Salt Lake City, where pollution is a fact of life: The city sits in a basin, and wintertime inversions trap a thick coat of visible smog over the city for days at a time. Jason Plautz, WIRED, "Cheap, Portable Sensors Are Democratizing Air-Quality Data," 11 July 2018 There was a strong capping inversion in place — a layer of warm air in place about a mile above the ground. Matthew Cappucci, Washington Post, "Fire and rain: Here’s how a wildfire sparked a freak thunderstorm in Texas," 17 May 2018 Notable elements include its 205-foot first hill, 90-degree first drop and four inversions that twist in and out of the ride's massive wooden frame. Staff, cleveland.com, "Comment here on cleveland.com court and crime stories for Saturday, May 5, 2018," 5 May 2018 Under President Donald Trump, the Treasury Department has moved to repeal or pare back some Obama-era tax regulations, including limits on intercompany debt often associated with inversions. Richard Rubin, WSJ, "U.S. Treasury Issues Final Regulations on Inversion Transactions," 11 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'inversion.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of inversion

1586, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about inversion

Statistics for inversion

Last Updated

17 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for inversion

The first known use of inversion was in 1586

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for inversion

inversion

noun

Financial Definition of inversion

What It Is

Corporate inversion is practice by U.S.-based companies of exchanging their registration with a subsidiary outside the U.S. in order to pay lower taxes.

How It Works

Many large companies in the U.S. have smaller subsidiary companies located outside of the country. Called "offshore subsidiaries," these smaller companies are registered and taxable in the country in which they are located. Since the tax burden for some wholly-owned foreign companies can be significantly lower under these circumstances, the U.S.-based parent company may engage in corporate inversion, swapping registrations with its offshore subsidiary so it is taxed at a lower rate.

For example, if U.S.-based Company XYZ owns Subsidiary ABC, located in the Caribbean, and ABC is taxed at a lower rate, XYZ may use corporate inversion to switch its U.S. registration with the Caribbean subsidiary in order to lower its overall tax burden.

Why It Matters

Corporate inversion, while a legitimate tax strategy, has serious implications for the revenue collected by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). With the growing popularity of corporate inversion in recent years, the IRS has made an effort to impose penalties and other deterrents upon companies that engage in this practice.

Source: Investing Answers

inversion

noun

English Language Learners Definition of inversion

: a change in the position, order, or relationship of things so that they are the opposite of what they had been

weather : a condition in which air close to the ground is cooler than the air above it

inversion

noun
in·​ver·​sion | \in-ˈvər-zhən, -shən \

Medical Definition of inversion 

1 : a reversal of position, order, form, or relationship: as

a : a dislocation of a bodily structure in which it is turned partially or wholly inside out inversion of the uterus

b : the condition (as of the foot) of being turned or rotated inward — compare eversion sense 2

c : retroflexion

d : a breaking off of a chromosome section and its subsequent reattachment in inverted position also : a chromosomal section that has undergone this process

2a : the conversion of dextrorotatory sucrose into a levorotatory mixture of glucose and fructose

b : a change from one stereochemical figuration at a chiral center in a usually organic molecule to the opposite configuration that is brought about by a reaction in which a substitution of one group is made for a different group

Keep scrolling for more

inversion

noun
in·​ver·​sion | \in-ˈvər-zhən \

Legal Definition of inversion 

: a corporate reorganization in which a U.S. corporation buys or merges with a foreign corporation and is restructured as a subsidiary of the newly created multinational company in order to establish a domicile in a foreign country with lower corporate taxes

called also corporate inversion, tax inversion

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on inversion

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

WORD OF THE DAY

full of whispering sounds

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!