leverage

1 of 2

noun

le·​ver·​age ˈle-və-rij How to pronounce leverage (audio)
ˈlē-;
ˈlev-rij,
ˈlēv-
1
: the action of a lever or the mechanical advantage gained by it
2
: power, effectiveness
trying to gain more political leverage
3
: the use of credit to enhance one's speculative capacity

leverage

2 of 2

verb

leveraged; leveraging

transitive verb

1
: to provide (something, such as a corporation) or supplement (something, such as money) with leverage
also : to enhance as if by supplying with financial leverage
2
: to use for gain : exploit
shamelessly leverage the system to their advantage Alexander Wolff

Example Sentences

Noun The union's size gave it leverage in the labor contract negotiations. The player's popularity has given him a great deal of leverage with the owners of the team. I used the leverage of the bar and a wooden block to pry the rock out of the hole. Verb The company wants to leverage its brands more effectively. a reality show contestant who's trying to leverage her 15 minutes of fame
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The hard-right group of more than 40 members, formed in 2015, had a lot of leverage over previous GOP speakers John Boehner and Paul Ryan. Michael Tomasky, The New Republic, 21 Nov. 2022 The possibility of leaving the region without any pandas could be leverage for Mexico. Fabiola SÁnchez, ajc, 17 Nov. 2022 That makes the use of leverage, also known as gearing, potentially more risky. Julie Steinberg, WSJ, 14 Nov. 2022 And, if Measure A passes, whoever comes after him will take office under a new reality in which the supervisors have an undeniable new level of leverage. Los Angeles Times, 11 Nov. 2022 Geoffrey Cain, a senior fellow at the Lincoln Network, a conservative tech advocacy group, noted that fear of a consumer backlash gives TikTok plenty of leverage. David Ingram, NBC News, 5 Nov. 2022 Did the Chinese government just gain a bit of leverage over the town square? Steve Mollman, Fortune, 23 Oct. 2022 The number one reason people lose assets and get wiped out during recessions is high leverage and not enough liquidity. Nikita Zhitov, Forbes, 17 Aug. 2022 Elon Musk is a conglomerate, and each arm of his empire potentially gives him more leverage, real or imagined, in advocating for the others. Seth Fiegerman, CNN, 29 Oct. 2022
Verb
Republicans won control of the U.S. House on Wednesday, returning the party to power in Washington and giving conservatives leverage to blunt President Joe Biden’s agenda and spur a flurry of investigations. Sara Burnett, Fortune, 16 Nov. 2022 Republicans won control of the U.S. House on Wednesday, returning the party to power in Washington and giving conservatives leverage to blunt President Joe Biden’s agenda and spur a flurry of investigations. Will Weissert, Chicago Tribune, 16 Nov. 2022 Republicans won control of the U.S. House on Wednesday, returning the party to power in Washington and giving conservatives leverage to blunt President Joe Biden’s agenda and spur a flurry of investigations. Sara Burnett, BostonGlobe.com, 16 Nov. 2022 Nearly a week after the midterm elections, Republicans were closing in on the majority, giving conservatives leverage to blunt Biden's agenda and spur a flurry of investigations. Will Weissert, ajc, 15 Nov. 2022 The companies that are sophisticated and efficient with their marketing know how to leverage across lots of platforms. WSJ, 30 Oct. 2022 Other issues are that many companies are already invested in technology that can't be utilized for AI and, sometimes, the knowledge isn't there on how to leverage existing licenses and technologies for AI purposes. Anand Mahurkar, Forbes, 10 Oct. 2022 Quartz: The world of work continues to struggle in both the treatment of women and how to leverage their unique strengths. Anna Oakes, Quartz, 5 Oct. 2022 Researchers describe how these affable marine mammals maintain and leverage their complex social connections in a pair of papers in the journal Current Biology. Karen Hopkin, Scientific American, 10 Aug. 2022 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

Noun

1830, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1957, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of leverage was in 1830

Dictionary Entries Near leverage

Cite this Entry

“Leverage.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/leverage. Accessed 1 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

leverage

noun

le·​ver·​age
ˈlev-(ə-)rij,
ˈlēv-
: the action of a lever or the increase in force gained by using a lever

Legal Definition

leverage 1 of 2

noun

le·​ver·​age ˈle-vrij, -və-rij How to pronounce leverage (audio)
: the use of credit to enhance one's speculative capacity

leverage

2 of 2

transitive verb

leveraged; leveraging
: to provide (as a corporation) or supplement (as money) with leverage

More from Merriam-Webster on leverage

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