pro forma

pro for·​ma | \ (ˌ)prō-ˈfȯr-mə How to pronounce pro forma (audio) \

Definition of pro forma

1 : made or carried out in a perfunctory manner or as a formality
2 : based on financial assumptions or projections: such as
a : reflecting a transaction (such as a merger) or other development as if it had been or will be in effect for a past or future period a pro forma balance sheet
b : excluding usually extraordinary charges or expenses (as from acquisitions, restructuring, or the write-down of goodwill) often in order to present a more attractive financial report pro forma income

Did you know?

A lot of things are done for the sake of appearances. A teacher might get officially observed and evaluated every three years, even though everyone knows she's terrific and the whole thing is strictly pro forma. A critic might say that an orchestral conductor gave a pro forma performance, since his heart wasn't in it. A business owner might make a pro forma appearance at the funeral of a politician's mother, never having met her but maybe hoping for a favor from her son sometime in the future. In business, pro forma has some special meanings; a pro forma invoice, for example, will list all the items being sent but, unlike a true invoice, won't be an actual bill.

Examples of pro forma in a Sentence

The meeting was strictly pro forma, since the decision had already been made.
Recent Examples on the Web The official denial of Zawahiri’s presence seemed aimed in part at saving face after the humiliation of being unable to protect a senior guest and at lowering tensions with the United States despite the statement’s pro forma condemnation. Pamela Constable, Washington Post, 4 Aug. 2022 By comparison, Cheney’s critiques of President Biden and his stewardship of the economy were pro forma — blaming his policies for surging inflation. Melanie Masonstaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 29 June 2022 Parking development costs vary, but the Padres have modeled a cost of $48,000 per space to build a replacement garage, according to the pro forma evaluated in the Keyser Marston report. Jeff Mcdonald, San Diego Union-Tribune, 17 Apr. 2022 The House of Representatives convenes for a pro forma session at 11 a.m. Alisa Wiersema, ABC News, 23 Nov. 2021 But many music biopics are fairly pro forma, so kudos to Lemercier for trying something … different. Washington Post, 5 Apr. 2022 Tryborgs are granted the expertise on cyborgs, almost pro forma, for no apparent reason. The Cyborg Jillian Weise, Wired, 21 Dec. 2021 The gesture, though, looked hollow and pro forma via television, especially in light of a guest speaker, facing real danger and exhibiting real courage. Washington Post, 11 Mar. 2022 The plan assigned a pro forma value for FinAccel of $2.5 billion. Ardian Wibisono, Forbes, 15 Mar. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of pro forma

1823, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pro forma

Latin, for form

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Time Traveler for pro forma

Time Traveler

The first known use of pro forma was in 1823

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Dictionary Entries Near pro forma


pro forma

pro forma balance sheet

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Last Updated

8 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Pro forma.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for pro forma

pro forma

pro for·​ma | \ prō-ˈfȯr-mə How to pronounce pro forma (audio) \

Legal Definition of pro forma

1 : made or carried out in a perfunctory manner or as a formality
2 : provided or made in advance to describe items or projections a pro forma invoice

History and Etymology for pro forma

Latin, for the sake of form


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