\ ˈstäk How to pronounce stock (audio) \

Definition of stock

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a store or supply accumulated or available especially : the inventory of goods of a merchant or manufacturer
b(1) : the equipment, materials, or supplies of an establishment
(2) : livestock
2a : the proprietorship element in a corporation usually divided into shares and represented by transferable certificates
b : a portion of such stock of one or more companies
3 : a supporting framework or structure: such as
a stocks plural : a device for publicly punishing offenders consisting of a wooden frame with holes in which the feet or feet and hands can be locked
b(1) : the wooden part by which a shoulder arm is held during firing
(2) : the butt of an implement (such as a whip or fishing rod)
(3) : bitstock, brace
c : a long beam on a field gun forming the third support point in firing
d stocks plural : the frame or timbers holding a ship during construction
4a(1) : the descendants of one individual : family, lineage of European stock
(2) : a compound organism
b : the original (such as a person, race, or language) from which others derive : source
c : an infraspecific group usually having unity of descent
d(1) : a related group of languages
(2) : a language family
5a : liquid in which meat, fish, or vegetables have been simmered that is used as a basis for soup, gravy, or sauce
b(1) : raw material from which something is manufactured
(2) : paper used for printing
c : the portion of a pack of cards not distributed to the players at the beginning of a game
6a : confidence or faith placed in someone or something put little stock in his testimony
b(1) : an estimate or evaluation of something take stock of the situation
(2) : the estimation in which someone or something is held his stock with the electorate remains highNewsweek
7a : the main stem of a plant : trunk
b(1) : a plant or plant part united with a scion in grafting and supplying mostly underground parts to a graft
(2) : a plant from which slips or cuttings are taken
8 : the production and presentation of plays by a stock company
10 : the crosspiece of an anchor — see anchor illustration
11a(1) : the part of a tally formerly given to the creditor in a transaction
(2) : a debt or fund due (as from a government) for money loaned at interest also, British : capital or a debt or fund bearing interest in perpetuity and not ordinarily redeemable as to principal
b archaic : a supply of capital : funds especially : money or capital invested or available for investment or trading
12 : any of a genus (Matthiola) of Old World herbs or subshrubs of the mustard family with racemes of usually sweet-scented flowers
13 : a wide band or scarf worn about the neck especially by some clergymen
14a(1) : a dull, stupid, or lifeless person
(2) archaic : something without life or consciousness
b archaic : stump
c archaic : a log or block of wood
in stock
: on hand : in the store and ready for delivery
out of stock
: having no more on hand : completely sold out


stocked; stocking; stocks

Definition of stock (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to procure or keep a stock of our store stocks that brand
2 : to provide with stock or a stock : supply stock a stream with trout
3 : to fit to or with a stock
4 : to graze (livestock) on land
5 : to make (a domestic animal) pregnant

intransitive verb

1 : to put in stock or supplies stock up on canned goods
2 : to send out new shoots



Definition of stock (Entry 3 of 3)

1a : commonly used or brought forward : standard the stock answer
b : kept regularly in stock comes in stock sizes a stock model
2 : employed in handling, checking, or taking care of the stock of merchandise on hand a stock clerk
3a : kept for breeding purposes : brood a stock mare
b : devoted to the breeding and rearing of livestock a stock farm
c : used or intended for livestock a stock train
d : used in herding livestock a stock horse a stock dog
4 : of or relating to a stock company

Examples of stock in a Sentence

Noun That camera is out of stock. Do you have any more light bulbs in stock? They carry a large stock of computer software. We built up an ample stock of food before the storm. She always seems to have a fresh stock of funny jokes. The value of his stocks has soared. Most of her money is invested in stocks. Do you own any stock? Verb Our store stocks only the finest goods. Do you stock this item? The bar is stocked with beer, wine and liquor. They stocked the shelves in the store with a variety of imported foods. Adjective Here are the stock patterns you can choose from. She gave a stock answer to the reporter's question. a dull narrative with stock characters That item is a stock model. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Coming in at the second position was Apple CEO Tim Cook ranked with $98.7 million — $82.3 million of that in stock awards. Jasmine Browley, Essence, 11 May 2022 Teams may come calling again for Mayfield over the next few weeks as teams take stock of their QB rooms. cleveland, 8 May 2022 As a matter of principle, restricted stock awards aren’t necessarily objectionable. Jacob Carpenter, Fortune, 6 May 2022 Blank earned $630,000 in salary, $4.5 million in stock awards, nearly $1.7 million in performance incentive compensation and other compensation. Georg Szalai, The Hollywood Reporter, 29 Apr. 2022 Endeavor executive chairman Patrick Whitesell received $123.1 million, also inflated by stock awards. Cynthia Littleton, Variety, 29 Apr. 2022 The practice slows everything down and helps him to take stock of what’s happening in his life. Sarah Parvinistaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 20 Apr. 2022 The majority of his compensation was in stock awards to the tune of $211.9 million. Adriano Marchese, WSJ, 1 Apr. 2022 However, Pichai received no stock awards as part of his compensation in 2020, per a subsequent filing. Catherine Thorbecke, CNN, 1 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Calley noted that small business owners who need to borrow more heavily to start a business, manufacture parts or stock their shelves face greater pressure as rates go up. Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, 4 May 2022 Caught off guard by the sudden rebound in consumer demand, companies have been scrambling to hire workers and stock their shelves. CBS News, 3 May 2022 Caught off guard by the sudden rebound in consumer demand, companies scrambled to hire workers and stock their shelves. Paul Wiseman, Chicago Tribune, 3 May 2022 Caught off guard by the sudden rebound in consumer demand, companies scrambled to hire workers and stock their shelves. NBC News, 3 May 2022 Caught off guard by the sudden rebound in consumer demand, companies scrambled to hire workers and stock their shelves. Paul Wiseman, ajc, 3 May 2022 Volunteers — some of them former customers — stock the shelves and roam the aisles, helping first-timers left jobless during the pandemic or strapped by other financial woes. Mike Klingaman,, 26 Oct. 2021 On top of all that, there are shortages of truck drivers to transport the items and retail and warehouse workers to stock the shelves. Catherine Garcia, The Week, 18 Oct. 2021 Many Beijing residents have rushed to stock up on food and daily necessities over the past week, fearing a Shanghai-style lockdown could cause shortages. Nectar Gan And Cnn's Beijing Bureau, CNN, 1 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective And the reassuringly stock characters require no special actorly finesse to bring to life. Ben Brantley, New York Times, 27 Mar. 2020 Anne Carpenter, an owner of an Ace Hardware store in Berkeley, said the retailer doesn’t usually stock air conditioners. Melia Russell,, 11 June 2019 The Red Branch production directed by Stephanie Lynn Williams features an endearing cast whose performances make potentially stock characters spring to life. Mike Giuliano, Columbia Flier, 23 Aug. 2017 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'stock.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of stock


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 14b


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 5


1625, in the meaning defined at sense 1b

History and Etymology for stock


Middle English stok, from Old English stocc; akin to Old High German stoc stick

Learn More About stock

Time Traveler for stock

Time Traveler

The first known use of stock was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near stock



stock account

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Statistics for stock

Last Updated

15 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Stock.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for stock


\ ˈstäk How to pronounce stock (audio) \

Kids Definition of stock

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : the whole supply or amount on hand Our stock of food is running low.
2 stocks plural : a wooden frame with holes to hold the feet or the feet and hands once used to punish a wrongdoer publicly
3 : the wooden part by which a rifle or shotgun is held against the shoulder during firing
4 : the source from which others descend : ancestry He is of Irish stock.
5 : farm animals : livestock, cattle
6 : a part ownership in a business that can be traded independently
7 : liquid in which meat, fish, or vegetables have been simmered
in stock
: on hand : in the store and available for purchase


stocked; stocking

Kids Definition of stock (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to provide with or get supplies especially for future use I'm stocking up on groceries.
2 : to get or keep a supply of That store stocks only the best goods.



Kids Definition of stock (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : kept regularly in supply especially for sale The window comes in stock sizes.
2 : commonly used : standard He gave a stock answer.


\ ˈstäk How to pronounce stock (audio) \

Medical Definition of stock

: a population, colony, or culture of organisms used for scientific research or medical purposes smallpox virus stocks retained for research into new vaccines and treatments against smallpox



Legal Definition of stock

1a : the equipment, materials, or supplies of a business
b : a store or supply accumulated especially : the inventory of the goods of a merchant or manufacturer
2 : the ownership element in a corporation usually divided into shares and represented by transferable certificates also : the certificate evidencing ownership of one or more shares of stock
capital stock
1 : the stock that a corporation may issue under its charter including both common and preferred stock
2 : the outstanding shares of a joint stock company considered as an aggregate
common stock
: a class of stock whose holders share in company profits (as through dividends) on a pro rata basis, may vote for directors and on important matters such as mergers, and may have limited access to information not publicly available
cumulative preferred stock
: preferred stock whose holders are entitled to the payment of cumulative dividends as well as current dividends before common stockholders are paid
growth stock
: stock issued by a growth company
margin stock
: stock that may be purchased in a margin account
no-par value stock
: stock issued with no par value which may be carried for corporate accounting purposes as part of the capital stock or as part of the capital surplus to the extent allowed by law

called also no-par stock

penny stock
: the stock of a small company not listed on a major exchange and traditionally selling at less than a dollar a share
preferred stock
: a class of corporate stock whose holders are guaranteed payment of dividends and a share of asset distribution before the holders of common stock but are usually denied voting rights
Treasury stock
: stock that is reacquired and held by the issuing company (as to increase the market value of traded shares)
voting stock
: stock (as common stock) entitling the holder to vote in matters of corporate governance
watered stock
: stock issued with a par value greater than the value of the underlying assets

More from Merriam-Webster on stock

Nglish: Translation of stock for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stock for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about stock


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