prof·​i·​teer·​ing | \ ˌprä-fə-ˈtir-iŋ How to pronounce profiteering (audio) \

Definition of profiteering

: the act or activity of making an unreasonable profit on the sale of essential goods especially during times of emergency … investigations unearthed information about industrial profiteering during the First World War …— Thomas E. Ricks The real estate culture in Florida had pushed profiteering to new levels, in large part because of its condominium economy.— Paul Reyes

Examples of profiteering in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web One of Jordan’s largest individual donations during the quarter came from the CEO of a Cleveland aerospace company that the Pentagon has accused of profiteering. Sabrina Eaton, cleveland, "Rep. Jim Jordan is raising big campaign bucks, Rep. Tim Ryan isn’t: See what Northeast Ohio Congress members collected," 1 Feb. 2020 Even so, the fantasy of World War III helped hide the reality of what war had become: a tangled mess of statecraft, profiteering, and politicking. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "World War III Is an Irresistible Meme," 5 Jan. 2020 The consultancy returned millions of dollars in fees after South African authorities implicated it in a profiteering scheme. Ian Macdougall, ProPublica, "How McKinsey Helped the Trump Administration Detain and Deport Immigrants," 3 Dec. 2019 The effects of pure profiteering on this cost are immeasurable. Libby Watson, The New Republic, "Single Payer Advocates Are Being Drawn Into the Wrong Debate," 6 Nov. 2019 In the first year, negotiations would also have to be conducted for insulin, the diabetes drug that has been a particular focus of industry profiteering in recent years. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, "Column: Pelosi finds a way to save billions by cutting drug prices, but Big Pharma pushes back," 18 Oct. 2019 Shoshana Zuboff has no tolerance for Big Tech profiteering off the backs of unsuspecting people. Robert Hackett, Fortune, "Harvard Economist Calls for Outlaw of Online Advertising Markets—Just Like the Trade of ‘Organs, Babies, or Slaves’," 18 Nov. 2019 Sanders says if people want a health care system that won’t bankrupt them, the answer is to get rid of profiteering by drug companies and insurers. Washington Post, "Democratic hopefuls take aim at insurer and pharma profits," 9 Aug. 2019 And while that involves picking a few early winners, that still seems preferable to ceding .new to a bunch of profiteering squatters. Wired, "Google's .New Shortcuts Are Now for Everyone," 29 Oct. 2019

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

1814, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for profiteering

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The first known use of profiteering was in 1814

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Statistics for profiteering

Last Updated

12 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Profiteering.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Feb. 2020.

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How to pronounce profiteering (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of profiteering

disapproving : the act of making money by selling things at very high prices at a time when they are hard to get

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