loan shark


: one who lends money to individuals at exorbitant rates of interest

Examples of loan shark in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web North Korean workers sometimes pay bribes to government officials to secure posts in China, and, during the pandemic, many borrowed these funds from loan sharks. Ian Urbina, The New Yorker, 6 Feb. 2024 They are reunited after their mother flees the country on a gambling streak, and after a loan shark comes out of the woodwork, the sisters come up with a scheme for Anne to go on her favorite game show to get enough money to pay him back. Andrew Walsh,, 27 Nov. 2023 Shot with the Safdie's grungy, crackling style, Uncut Gems could have starred a 1970s Al Pacino, as Howard dodges loan sharks, romantic entanglements, and an all-or-nothing scheme involving a valuable opal that hinges, improbably, on the Boston Celtics 2012 playoff run. Dennis Perkins,, 23 Oct. 2023 Migrants from Africa, Asia and South America are mortgaging their family land, selling their cars or borrowing money from loan sharks to embark on long, often treacherous journeys to reach the United States. Miriam Jordan, New York Times, 31 Jan. 2024 Richard Romanus, the tough-guy character actor best known for his turn as Michael Longo, the Little Italy loan shark who gets into it with Robert De Niro’s Johnny Civello in Martin Scorsese’s Mean Streets, has died. Mike Barnes, The Hollywood Reporter, 30 Dec. 2023 Then as now, people hunkered over the soil and used their hands, earning too little to feed their families, forcing many households to borrow from loan sharks. Peter S. Goodman Jes Aznar, New York Times, 30 Dec. 2023 The twins learn that their grandpa is being hunted by a loan shark. Shelby Stewart, Essence, 22 Dec. 2023 In this season 3 episode of Sister, Sister, Grandpa Campbell (Sherman Hemsley) arrives for the holidays with a $1,000 debt to a loan shark. Maria Yagoda, Peoplemag, 13 Dec. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'loan shark.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1905, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of loan shark was in 1905

Dictionary Entries Near loan shark

Cite this Entry

“Loan shark.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

loan shark

: a person who lends money at very high rates of interest
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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