quar·​tile | \ ˈkwȯr-ˌtī(-ə)l How to pronounce quartile (audio) , -tᵊl \

Definition of quartile

: any of the three values that divide the items of a frequency distribution into four classes with each containing one fourth of the total population also : any one of the four classes

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Did You Know?

A quartile is a quarter of a specific group that has been tested or evaluated in specific ways. The first quartile is the one that scores highest and the fourth quartile scores lowest. For achievement and proficiency tests, the first quartile is the place to be; for blood pressure or cholesterol, the third quartile is healthier.

Examples of quartile in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The top quartile also beat the S&P 500 in nine of 11 years since 2008, and by an average of 7.9 percentage points. Washington Post, "If Hedge Funds Are Lagging, Why Do They Have So Much Money?," 19 Feb. 2019 Nominal wages in the lowest quartile of the income scale are growing by 4.6%. The Economist, "America’s presidential election The Democratic primaries will be a contest between radicals and repairers," 6 Feb. 2020 Returns from its 2011 vehicle – which is still to be fully liquidated – are in the third quartile of funds for which Bloomberg has performance figures. Chris Hughes | Bloomberg, Washington Post, "The Leveraged Buyout Industry Is Starting to Eat Itself," 6 Aug. 2019 Meanwhile, a slightly smaller proportion of students from families in the bottom quartile of the income distribution graduate from college today, the very students Johnson’s loan programs were supposed to help. Jonathan Butcher, National Review, "The Great Society and Opportunity Lost," 26 Oct. 2019 On a one-year horizon, almost a third of Amundi’s funds were in the bottom two quartiles. Washington Post, "The Perils of Fund Underperformance," 18 Sep. 2019 Students who come to Fairmont later — but no later than 7th grade — and students who rank below the top quartile are eligible for a portion of the guarantee. Caitlin Yoshiko Kandil, latimes.com, "Fairmont Private Schools pledges to convert high school tuition into college funding," 2 Mar. 2018 Consider that the net internal rate of return of the bottom quartile of the Venture Capital Index was negative every year from 1997 to 2006, with an average IRR of negative 4.8% during the period. Washington Post, "Stock Investors Could Use a Refresher on the Basics," 14 Nov. 2019 With the exception of Chile, all Latin American countries participating in the OECD Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), which tests 15-year-old students worldwide in reading, mathematics, and science, score in the bottom quartile. Mariana Costa Checa, Fortune, "Latin America Is a Growing Tech Hub. But It Needs to Invest in Its Talent," 24 Sep. 2019

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

1879, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for quartile

International Scientific Vocabulary, from Latin quartus

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Time Traveler for quartile

Time Traveler

The first known use of quartile was in 1879

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Statistics for quartile

Last Updated

12 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Quartile.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quartile. Accessed 29 Mar. 2020.

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Financial Definition of quartile

What It Is

A quartile is one of four equal parts.

How It Works

For example, if we were to look at all of the closing prices for Company XYZ stock for every day in the last year, the top 25% of those prices would represent the upper quartile of the data. The bottom 25% of those prices would represent the lower quartile of the data. There would be two quartiles in between the upper and lower quartiles. The average of all the stock prices typically falls right in the middle, between the second and third quartiles.

Why It Matters

Quartiles are crucial for studying economic data, income data, stock data and virtually any other kind of financial information. By breaking things into quartiles, an analyst can make a variety of inferences about the data and how the observed item behaves.

Source: Investing Answers

More from Merriam-Webster on quartile

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with quartile

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about quartile

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