op·​er·​at·​ing ˈä-pə-ˌrā-tiŋ How to pronounce operating (audio)
: of, relating to, or used for or in operations
operating expenses
a hospital operating room

Examples of operating in a Sentence

the only operating nuclear power plant in the state
Recent Examples on the Web Under Proposition 309, voters casting mail-in ballots could provide a driver's license or non-operating identification license number, the last four digits of a social security number, or a unique identifying number provided by the secretary of state for voter registration purposes. Arlyssa D. Becenti, The Arizona Republic, 27 Oct. 2022 The adjusted net income decreased by 8% y-o-y to $3.9 billion in the first nine months of 2022 due to higher expenses as a % of revenues and lower non-operating income. Trefis Team, Forbes, 11 Jan. 2023 Known for many years for its great and famous passenger trains, the last regularly scheduled FECR passenger train ran on July 31, 1968, due to the work stoppage by the non-operating unions that began on January 22, 1963. Seth H. Bramson, Sun Sentinel, 12 Oct. 2022 The main reason behind it was an increase in non-operating expenses and higher income tax in the quarter. Trefis Team, Forbes, 25 Apr. 2022 On Monday, as Hasbro released its fourth quarter earnings, the toy maker recorded a $41.3 million net non-cash, non-operating charge associated with the company’s investment in the Discovery Family Channel. Etan Vlessing, The Hollywood Reporter, 7 Feb. 2022 Lower non-operating expenses outweighed a slightly higher effective tax rate, and EPS rose from $1.44 in Q1 ’21 to $1.91 in Q1 ’22. Trefis Team, Forbes, 5 Jan. 2022 However, a $10 million rise in non-operating expenses saw EPS drop from $1.32 to $1.31 over this period. Trefis Team, Forbes, 27 Sep. 2021 Operating Earnings contain non-operating gains/losses that lead to exaggerating the decline and the rebound in true profits as shown in Figure 1. David Trainer, Forbes, 30 Aug. 2021

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

Word History


from present participle of operate

First Known Use

1728, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of operating was in 1728

Dictionary Entries Near operating

Cite this Entry

“Operating.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/operating. Accessed 26 May. 2024.

Medical Definition


op·​er·​at·​ing ˈäp-(ə-)ˌrāt-iŋ How to pronounce operating (audio)
: of, relating to, or used for operations
a hospital operating room
operating scissors

Legal Definition


: engaged in active business
: arising out of or relating to the current daily operations of a concern (as in transportation or manufacturing) as distinct from its financial transactions and permanent improvements
operating expenses
operating personnel

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