inversion

noun
in·​ver·​sion | \ in-ˈvər-zhən How to pronounce inversion (audio) , -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 Investors see such inversions as a fairly reliable warning signal of a recession within a year or so, though its track record isn't perfect. Alex Viega, Anchorage Daily News, "Global markets roiled by coronavirus fears; Dow drops 603," 31 Jan. 2020 Julien Posture for Quartz 2019 was a dramatic year, full of manufacturing slumps, yield-curve inversions, and other possible harbingers of impending recession. Gwynn Guilford, Quartz, "The economic threats that loom over 2020," 27 Jan. 2020 The odds of an inversion only increase as the hypothetical margin narrows. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "The Case Against the Popular Vote," 20 Sep. 2019 More family-friendly than Iron Gwazi, that coaster’s top speed is 52 mph, with no inversions. Hannah Chubb, PEOPLE.com, "Busch Gardens' New Hybrid Roller Coaster Will Be Tallest in the U.S. and Fastest in the World," 20 Sep. 2019 But the inversion only indicates a recession is coming. Janna Herron, USA TODAY, "A decade after the big one, what kind of recession will we have next?," 19 Aug. 2019 There is a different kind of yield curve inversion happening in European bonds. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "What’s up with the yield curve?," 16 Aug. 2019 During inversions, all the pollutants from the surrounding areas get sucked into the valleys. Dp Opinion, The Denver Post, "Letters: UN climate talks disappoint, but don’t give up; Pollution and air quality are a top priority; The wisdom or folly of impeaching Donald Trump (12/22/19)," 23 Dec. 2019 Some hot Jupiters have evidence of hydrogen gas escaping from their atmospheres, and some particularly hot-hot Jupiters show a thermal inversion in their atmosphere—where the temperature increases with altitude. John Wenz, Ars Technica, "Lessons from scorching hot weirdo-planets," 22 Dec. 2019

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

1546, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about inversion

Time Traveler for inversion

Time Traveler

The first known use of inversion was in 1546

See more words from the same year

Statistics for inversion

Last Updated

10 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Inversion.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/inversion. Accessed 17 Feb. 2020.

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
How to pronounce inversion (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of inversion

formal : 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 How to pronounce inversion (audio) \

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
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 How to pronounce inversion (audio) \

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

More from Merriam-Webster on inversion

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with inversion

Spanish Central: Translation of inversion

Nglish: Translation of inversion for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about inversion

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

See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

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!