prof·​i·​teer·​ing ˌprä-fə-ˈtir-iŋ How to pronounce profiteering (audio)
: 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 With the losses piling up for families in Gaza facing missile strikes, famine, and profiteering, more Gazans say the idea of trusting Hamas as rulers governing the strip again is unthinkable. Taylor Luck, The Christian Science Monitor, 14 Mar. 2024 For more than a year, the president has publicly blasted airlines, credit card giants, concert venues, hotels, internet providers and landlords for their profiteering, as the White House looks for ways to lower prices in a tough election year. Tony Romm, Washington Post, 17 Jan. 2024 The most frustrating thing about America’s failure to rein in drug prices is that a weapon against Big Pharma’s profiteering has been hiding in plain sight — and never used — for more than 40 years. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 13 Dec. 2023 During World War II, not only Switzerland, but Franco’s Spain, Salazar’s Portugal and even social-democratic Sweden engaged in ruthless profiteering with the Third Reich under the guise of nonalignment. Hugh Eakin, WSJ, 5 Jan. 2024 Yet some residents argue the district would open the door to water profiteering, claiming the plan would connect local supplies to California water markets, and allow the state to demand transfers during drought emergencies. Ian James, Los Angeles Times, 2 Dec. 2023 The administration views some of those price spikes as the result of corporate profiteering, as companies look to squeeze their customers in a bid to pump their bottom lines. Tony Romm, Washington Post, 19 Nov. 2023 But regardless of the outcome, the accusations leveled via the cases gesture to themes that have defined the latest chapter in crypto’s short history: chicanery and profiteering, concealed by a veneer of decentralization. Joel Khalili, WIRED, 22 Nov. 2023 Demand for hospice care will grow dramatically as the population ages, but staff shortages, corporate profiteering and a rash of Medicare fraud and billing scandals have roiled the industry, with recent exposes in the L.A. Times and a joint ProPublica-New Yorker investigation. Steve Lopez, Los Angeles Times, 18 Nov. 2023

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

Word History

First Known Use

1814, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of profiteering was in 1814

Dictionary Entries Near profiteering

Cite this Entry

“Profiteering.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Apr. 2024.

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