account

noun
ac·​count | \ ə-ˈkau̇nt How to pronounce account (audio) \

Definition of account

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a record of debit (see debit entry 2 sense 1a) and credit (see credit entry 1 sense 2d) entries to cover transactions involving a particular item or a particular person or concern
b : a statement of transactions during a fiscal period and the resulting balance
c archaic : reckoning, computation
2a : a statement explaining one's conduct She was asked to give an account of her actions.
b : a statement or exposition of reasons, causes, or motives no satisfactory account of these phenomena
c : a reason for an action : basis On that account I must refuse.
3a(1) : a formal business arrangement providing for regular dealings or services (such as banking, advertising, or store credit) and involving the establishment and maintenance of an account a checking account also : client, customer They are one of our most important accounts.
(2) : money deposited in a bank account and subject to withdrawal by the depositor
b : an arrangement in which a person uses the Internet or e-mail services of a particular company
4a : value, importance It's of no account to me.
b : esteem stood high in their account
5 : advantage turned her wit to good account
6a : careful thought : consideration have to take many things into account
b : a usually mental record : track Keep account of all you do.
7 : a description of facts, conditions, or events : report, narrative the newspaper account of the fire By all accounts they're well-off. also : performance a straightforward account of the sonata
give a good account of oneself
: to perform well especially in a competition or confrontation : to acquit oneself well Though he has an aristocratic bearing, he could probably give a good account of himself in a street fight.— Ishmael Reed
on account
: with the price charged to one's account purchasing on acccount
on account of
: for the sake of : because of The game was cancelled on account of rain.
on no account
: under no circumstances On no account should the children be left alone at home.
on one's own account
1 : on one's own behalf I'm doing it on my own account, not for anyone else.
2 : at one's own risk
3 : by oneself : on one's own

account

verb
accounted; accounting; accounts

Definition of account (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to furnish a justifying analysis or explanation used with for couldn't account for the loss
2a : to be the sole or primary factor used with for The left fielder accounted for all three putouts.
b : to bring about the capture, death, or destruction of something used with for Enemy fighters accounted for two of the bombers.

transitive verb

1 : to think of as : consider accounts himself lucky
2 : to probe into : analyze

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Examples of account in a Sentence

Noun

the difference between the debit and credit sides of an account We always keep very good accounts. We opened new accounts at a bank last week. I took out my money and closed my account. You can withdraw up to $1,000 a day from your account. Every week, she puts a part of her paycheck into a separate account. setting up a bank account

Verb

account themselves lucky to be alive
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Early investors in Petro were invited to buy the cryptocurrency by wiring funds to a Venezuelan government account at Evrofinance, according to the department. Mengqi Sun, WSJ, "U.S. Places Sanctions on Moscow-Based Evrofinance Mosnarbank," 11 Mar. 2019 Every season is available for purchase on Amazon, and for free with a Hulu account. Megan Stein, Country Living, "Is 'Last Man Standing' on Tonight?," 25 Jan. 2019 The interview is Kelly’s first candid account of his tenure — and first attempt to write his legacy. Amanda Sakuma, Vox, "John Kelly’s exit interview lifts the curtain on the chaos within the Trump White House," 30 Dec. 2018 My dream is to pick a topic, pick a war, pick a decision that has consequence and just report the hell out of it for like three years, and just have this really definitive account of something that has really big public import. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Axios’ Jonathan Swan explains what the press gets wrong about the Trump administration," 6 Dec. 2018 In pictures and in public the family appeared to be an emblem of warmth, love, and protection, but postmortem accounts of the Hart Tribe, as many called them, paint a very different picture. Glamour, "Broken Harts, Episode 1: Fear," 4 Dec. 2018 The breach is one of the largest in history, after recent Yahoo breaches that compromised the accounts of nearly three billion customers. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "Marriott breach leaves 500 million exposed with passport, card numbers stolen," 30 Nov. 2018 What's more, the official Instagram account of The Conners posted another photo on the same day showing Mary in the doorway looking equally somber. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "Mary Steenburgen’s Guest Appearance on ‘The Conners’ Premiere Looks Very Dark," 15 Oct. 2018 Turkish authorities recovered the audio from Khashoggi's iPhone and his iCloud account, the newspaper said. Fox News, "Newspaper says Turkey has audio of Saudi writer's slaying," 14 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The consulting firm says self-driving cars will cost more than conventional ones but will drastically cut labor costs, which account for the bulk of delivery expenses. Mike Colias, WSJ, "Tonight’s Dinner? In a Cooler-Sized Robot That Knows Where You Live," 11 Mar. 2019 Tapping this resource at home would catapult U.S. production closer to China levels, which now account for 90 percent of the market share. Jill Kiedaisch, Popular Mechanics, "We've Found a New Source for Rare-Earth Elements We Need for Green Tech," 7 Mar. 2019 Walmart’s international business, which accounts for about 24 percent of its total revenue and rang up $120.8 billion in sales for its latest fiscal year ended Jan. 31, has seen choppy growth. Danica Kirka, The Seattle Times, "UK regulator casts doubt on Sainsbury’s-Asda merger," 20 Feb. 2019 Videos that are flagged, which account for a large percentage of removed content, according to Pichai, are then reviewed by the algorithm or a human moderator. Julia Alexander, The Verge, "Google still has no answers for YouTube’s biggest problem," 11 Dec. 2018 Lucrative crops that account for about $2 billion of the Georgia economy were completely destroyed as a result of Hurricane Michael, Southern Living reports. Eileen Reslen, Country Living, "Hurricane Michael Completely Destroys Crops on Georgia Farms," 12 Oct. 2018 The majority of strokes are ischemic, but Williams experienced a less common hemorrhagic stroke, or bleeding stroke, which account for about 13 percent of strokes, according to the American Stroke Association (ASA). Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "Montel Williams Describes His Life-Threatening Stroke: 'I Didn’t Think That I Was Going to Recover From This.'," 12 Oct. 2018 The two were staying at a gorgeous resort in Canada at the time, which accounted for some very memorable engagement pics. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, ""Riverdale" Star Jordan Connor Just Got Engaged and the Photos are Adorable," 27 Sep. 2018 Out of 76 major shows, New York only had 12 over-50 models walk for the entire Spring 2019 season, which accounts for not even 1 percent. Lauren Alexis Fisher, Harper's BAZAAR, "New York Fashion Week Had Its Most Diverse Season Yet in Terms of Race, Size, and Age," 26 Sep. 2018

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1c

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for account

Noun

Middle English acounte, accompt, borrowed from Anglo-French acunte, acounte, noun derivative of acunter "to account entry 2"

Verb

Middle English accounten, acounten, accompten "to count, compute, evaluate, give an account of," borrowed from Anglo-French acunter, acompter, from a-, prefix forming transitive verbs (going back to Latin ad- ad-) + cunter, compter "to count entry 1"

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Learn More about account

Statistics for account

Last Updated

17 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for account

The first known use of account was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for account

on account

noun

Financial Definition of on account

What It Is

On account is a term that describes situations in which a customer makes a partial payment for goods or services purchased.

How It Works

In the business world, buying things on account is the same as creating accounts payable. For example, let's assume that Company XYZ orders $1 million in widget parts from its supplier.

Company XYZ pays the supplier $100,000 and puts the other $900,000 on account. This basically means it will pay the rest later -- let's say in 60 days.

Why It Matters

Buying things on account is similar to saying, "put it on my tab." Eventually, however, you have to pay the tab. In our example, the transaction requires careful accounting. Once Company XYZ places its order and/or receives the parts, it will increase its inventory account by $1 million, decrease its cash by $100,000, and increase its accounts payable by $900,000. When 60 days has passed and Company XYZ pays the invoice, it will reduce cash by $900,000 and reduce its accounts payable by $900,000.

Technically, any kind of installment loan (such as your mortgage or car loan) is akin to putting something on account. In the business world, putting things on account usually creates accounts payable (or A/P). A/P is a liability, and as such, it appears on the balance sheet.

In turn, when accounts payable go down, this is considered a use of cash on the company's cash flow statement, and as such, it reduces the company's working capital (defined as current assets minus current liabilities). When accounts payable goes up, this is considered a source of cash on the company's cash flow statement because the company is "stretching out" the time it takes to pay its invoices and thus not using cash as quickly.

Source: Investing Answers

account

noun

English Language Learners Definition of account

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a record of money that has been paid and money that has been received
: records of income and expenses
: an arrangement in which a bank keeps a record of the money that a person puts in and takes out of the bank

account

verb

English Language Learners Definition of account (Entry 2 of 2)

formal : to think of (someone or something) in a specified way

account

noun
ac·​count | \ ə-ˈkau̇nt\

Kids Definition of account

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a record of money received and money paid out
2 : an arrangement with a bank to hold money and keep records of transactions
3 : an arrangement for regular dealings with a business
4 : an arrangement in which a person uses the Internet or e-mail services of a particular company
5 : a statement of explanation or of reasons or causes You'll be asked to give an account of your actions.
6 : a statement of facts or events : report Give me an account of the game.
7 : worth entry 2 sense 1, importance It's of no account to them what I think.
on account of
: because of We cancelled on account of the rain.
on someone's account
: because of someone Don't stay on my account.

account

verb
accounted; accounting

Kids Definition of account (Entry 2 of 2)

: to think of as He accounted himself lucky.
account for
1 : to take into consideration She didn't account for extra costs.
2 : to give an explanation How do you account for your success?
3 : to be the cause of The flu accounts for many absences.
4 : to make up or form Women account for half the employees.

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account

noun
ac·​count

Legal Definition of account

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a record of debit and credit entries to cover transactions involving a particular item (as cash or notes receivable) or a particular person or concern
b : a statement of transactions during a fiscal period showing the resulting balance sometimes used in the pl. trustees filed annual accounts as required by statute— W. M. McGovern, Jr. et al.
2 : a periodically rendered reckoning (as one listing charged purchases and credits)
3 : a sum of money or its equivalent deposited in the common cash of a bank and subject to withdrawal at the option of the depositor
4 : a right under Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code to payment for goods or services which is not contained in an instrument or chattel paper and that may or may not have been earned by performance

Legal Definition of account (Entry 2 of 2)

: to give a financial account a duty to account

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More from Merriam-Webster on account

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with account

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for account

Spanish Central: Translation of account

Nglish: Translation of account for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of account for Arabic Speakers

Comments on account

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