nationalize

verb
na·​tion·​al·​ize | \ ˈnash-nə-ˌlīz How to pronounce nationalize (audio) , ˈna-shə-nə-ˌlīz\
nationalized; nationalizing

Definition of nationalize

transitive verb

1 : to give a national character to
2 : to invest control or ownership of in the national government

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Other Words from nationalize

nationalization \ ˌnash-​nə-​lə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce nationalization (audio) , ˌna-​shə-​nə-​lə-​ \ noun
nationalizer \ ˈnash-​nə-​ˌlī-​zər How to pronounce nationalizer (audio) , ˌna-​shə-​nə-​ˌlī-​zər \ noun

Examples of nationalize in a Sentence

The government nationalized the health-care system in the mid-1950s. nationalizing the country's oil supply

Recent Examples on the Web

All this fearmongering about nationalizing industries and taking from the rich—the Robin Hood thing—that’s a gross misrepresentation. Peter Slevin, The New Yorker, "The Many, Tangled American Definitions of Socialism," 14 June 2019 Last month, the former head of Medicare and Medicaid recommended that the US should nationalize insulin production in order to limit the financial burden of the drug, which is sometimes so steep patients ration their supplies and risk death. Katherine Ellen Foley, Quartz, "Prices of the most common prescription drugs nearly doubled in less than a decade," 4 June 2019 General Juan Velasco Alvarado, who ruled until 1977, nationalized foreign oil company holdings and oversaw an uneven but relatively successful land reform that abolished the old semifeudal haciendas and turned land over to peasants. Rachel Nolan, Harper's magazine, "A Jagged Scrap of History," 24 June 2019 In other words, under this plan no businesses would be nationalized. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Kevin Williamson’s unhinged attack on Elizabeth Warren’s corporate accountability bill, explained," 17 Aug. 2018 The new South Africa needed international investment and acceptance, and the World Bank was hardly going to approve of plans to nationalize the country’s farmland and mines. James Pogue, Harper's magazine, "The Myth of White Genocide," 10 June 2019 Support for a small, far-left political party that advocates for nationalizing all land in South Africa has been growing. Jennifer Williams, Vox, "Trump’s tweet echoing white nationalist propaganda about South African farmers, explained," 23 Aug. 2018 So, the fact is when Trump is involved, it's nationalized. Fox News, "Judge orders Fusion GPS to give deposition over dossier," 28 July 2018 Spain’s Podemos, which won more than a fifth of the vote in the last general election, proposes nationalizing sectors such as energy and telecommunications. Eric Sylvers, WSJ, "Europe’s Populist Left and Right Share a Common Call: State Intervention," 14 Dec. 2018

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

1799, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for nationalize

Last Updated

19 Jul 2019

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The first known use of nationalize was in 1799

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More Definitions for nationalize

nationalization

noun

Financial Definition of nationalization

What It Is

Nationalization occurs when a country's government seizes the assets of corporations or resources without paying for those assets.

How It Works

Let's say Country XYZ elects John Doe. A year before he is due for re-election, John Doe dissolves the ineffective representative houses of government and issues an executive order abolishing presidential term limits. In this way, he is able to assume a dictatorial form of leadership.

Doe then decides that the people of Country XYZ should not have to pay for food. Accordingly, he nationalizes the food manufacturing companies, including Kraft. In doing so, he seizes Kraft's factories, cash accounts, manufacturing equipment and other assets but does not provide compensation to Kraft's investors for those assets. He then appoints a person to run and manage the company on behalf of the government.

The Gold Reserve Act nationalized gold and fixed its price. The Gold Reserve Act was notable because in an attempt to end the Great Depression, it fixed the value of the U.S. Treasury’s gold holdings. By legislating that $1 was worth 15.715 grains of gold, a troy ounce of gold could buy $35 rather than $20.67. By devaluing the dollar this way, the value of the Treasury’s gold increased by $2.81 billion.

After seizing everybody’s gold, the Gold Reserve Act allowed the Treasury to then set the price of gold at $35. The Treasury used the profits to create an Exchange Stabilization Fund, which (even today) allows it to trade foreign currency in order to stabilize the exchange value of U.S. currency without affecting domestic money supply or requiring Congressional approval

Why It Matters

Nationalization is a controversial action, and most investors in nationalized companies will say that it is basically theft. However, when governments nationalize industries or companies, they usually do so in an attempt to control prices for the products those industries produce, are interested in "redistributing wealth," or control the expenses associated with production in that industry. It is most common in developing economies and is sometimes a way to grab power.

Source: Investing Answers

nationalize

verb

English Language Learners Definition of nationalize

: to cause (something) to be under the control of a national government

nationalize

verb
na·​tion·​al·​ize | \ ˈna-shə-nə-ˌlīz How to pronounce nationalize (audio) \
nationalized; nationalizing

Kids Definition of nationalize

: to place under government control

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nationalize

transitive verb
na·​tion·​al·​ize | \ ˈna-shə-nə-ˌlīz How to pronounce nationalize (audio) \
nationalized; nationalizing

Legal Definition of nationalize

: to invest control or ownership of in the national government

More from Merriam-Webster on nationalize

Spanish Central: Translation of nationalize

Nglish: Translation of nationalize for Spanish Speakers

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appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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