sticking point


Definition of sticking point

: an item (as in negotiations) resulting or likely to result in an impasse

Examples of sticking point in a Sentence

The length of the contract has become a sticking point in the negotiations.
Recent Examples on the Web The last sticking point seemed to center around, of all things, liner notes. Andy Greene, Rolling Stone, 7 June 2021 The sticking point of the negotiations has been that Pfizer wants to be protected from legal liability where severe side effects are concerned. Eve Sneider, Wired, 28 May 2021 The key sticking point on police reform hasn't changed after months of talks. Rick Klein, Averi Harper, ABC News, 25 May 2021 Although the sides have not resolved their core ideological differences, the sticking point in the rivalry between the two axes – Islamist movements – is increasingly becoming moot. Taylor Luck, The Christian Science Monitor, 13 May 2021 Bainum agreed last year to buy the Baltimore Sun from Alden, but their negotiations hit a sticking point over fees. Washington Post, 6 May 2021 The blanket statement will find agreement from other stakeholders to the OECD process, but the sticking point is where the line should be drawn. Tax Notes Staff, Forbes, 27 May 2021 Another sticking point last decade was the water board’s inability to appropriately restrict water users given the state’s lack of data. Kurtis Alexander, San Francisco Chronicle, 16 May 2021 Iran has not yet engaged seriously on its plans, still insisting that Washington move first, but another sticking point remains: which sanctions will be lifted. New York Times, 9 May 2021

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

1732, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for sticking point

Time Traveler

The first known use of sticking point was in 1732

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Statistics for sticking point

Last Updated

14 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sticking point.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for sticking point

sticking point


English Language Learners Definition of sticking point

: something that people disagree about and that prevents progress from being made in discussions


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