shrink·age | \ˈshriŋ-kij, especially Southern ˈsriŋ-\

Definition of shrinkage 

1 : the act or process of shrinking

2a : the loss in weight of livestock during shipment and in the process of preparing the meat for consumption

b : the loss of goods especially by theft inventory shrinkage

3 : the amount lost by shrinkage

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Examples of shrinkage in a Sentence

The shrinkage in contributions is significant. a shrinkage of 10 percent the shrinkage of the polar ice caps
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Recent Examples on the Web

Among the most challenging: the abrupt loss of $1.8 billion in operating cash and a major shrinkage of Harvard’s endowment after the 2008 financial crisis. Nick Anderson, Washington Post, "‘More open and diverse’: Harvard’s outgoing president on a decade of change," 31 May 2018 The 33-year-old from Boca Raton, Florida, was treated last August, and said a recent scan seemed to show some tumor shrinkage. Marilynn Marchione,, "Enemy turned ally: How poliovirus is used to fight brain tumors," 26 June 2018 Use your thumb to make an indentation at the center of the burger (the resulting dimple will help prevent burger shrinkage). Jim Shahin, charlotteobserver, "The best way to grill a burger keeps it off the grate," 6 July 2018 Now, in the South, contemplating shrinkage and frizz in 90 degree heat and 80% humidity, my hair seems poised to go rogue. Kate Branch, Vogue, "Why, at 31, I Finally Started Wearing My Afro," 29 June 2018 Salvador Allende—have seen the rout of international socialism as well as a radical shrinkage in the audience, or market share, for poetry. Benjamin Kunkel, The New Republic, "The partisan world of Pablo Neruda," 2 July 2018 If anything, paychecks in desirable jobs would be free to shrink to honorarium size, and choice opportunity would again redound to the rich, for whom the shrinkage would not mean very much. Nathan Heller, The New Yorker, "Who Really Stands to Win from Universal Basic Income?," 24 Mar. 2014 That is easy to say, but unions, fearing job losses among 640,000 staff, oppose any shrinkage. The Economist, "The departure of the VW boss heralds a big shake-up," 12 Apr. 2018 Beyond dryness, other pain points like curl definition and shrinkage especially affect those with type 4 textures. Janell Hickman, Allure, "The 13 Best Products for Type 4 Kinky-Curly Hair," 1 June 2018

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

1800, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for shrinkage

Last Updated

19 Aug 2018

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Time Traveler for shrinkage

The first known use of shrinkage was in 1800

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More Definitions for shrinkage



English Language Learners Definition of shrinkage

: the amount by which something becomes smaller or less

: the act or process of becoming smaller in amount, size, or value


shrink·age | \ˈshriŋ-kij \

Kids Definition of shrinkage

: the amount by which something shrinks or becomes less

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