\ ˈstäk How to pronounce stock (audio) \

Essential Meaning of stock

1 : the supply of goods available for sale in a store That camera is out of stock. Do you have any more light bulbs in stock? They carry a large/small stock of computer software.
2 : a supply of something that is available for use We built up an ample stock of food before the storm. She always seems to have a fresh stock of funny jokes. There was a decrease in available housing stock [=houses and apartments] last year.
3 : a share of the value of a company which can be bought, sold, or traded as an investment The value of his stocks has soared. Most of her money is invested in stocks. See More ExamplesDo you own any stock? She bought (some) stock in the company.Hide

Full 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 The immediate impact was not as many Christmas gifts in stock. George Castle,, 19 Nov. 2021 Lectric eBikes struggled to stay in stock and meet demand long before the supply chain clog. NBC News, 18 Nov. 2021 While some versions are already sold out, several are in stock and marked down. Jessica Leigh Mattern,, 18 Nov. 2021 Much of the cheap money found its way into stock prices, which have soared. Jeffrey Sachs, CNN, 13 Nov. 2021 But the leaders of diversified companies are increasingly feeling pressure to simplify their sometimes sprawling business empires, in hopes of sharpening their focus and lifting their stock prices., 12 Nov. 2021 During the pandemic, the collective net worth of America's roughly 700 billionaires surged by $2 trillion, thanks to a rise in stock prices and the values of other assets, according to Americans for Tax Fairness, a left-leaning group. Aimee Picchi, CBS News, 5 Nov. 2021 Our mistake was to define risk in only one way – volatility of stock prices. Michael P. Regan, Fortune, 1 Nov. 2021 That's crucial after climbing interest rates raised worries that stock prices had grown too expensive relative to profits. Elaine Kurtenbach, ajc, 18 Oct. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb And Biden has leaned heavily on the heads of companies such as FedEx, Walmart and Target over the supply-chain crunch, with the administration just this month touting executives’ commitments to stock their shelves ahead of the holidays. Jeff Stein, Anchorage Daily News, 21 Nov. 2021 Ride 2 Rid Hunger will continue to support Breaking Bread’s initiative to stock local food pantries and keep our community fed, including additional events and rides in the future., 17 Nov. 2021 Cardinal Health plans to stock and replenish products daily from its distribution center in Greensboro, N.C., about an hour’s drive away. Lydia O’neal, WSJ, 16 Nov. 2021 The country’s main fashion hub is there; it’s where retailers come to stock their shelves, and it’s where Bizzarri’s office is located. Robin Givhan, Washington Post, 15 Nov. 2021 This should make Airbnb stock a top pick for investors looking to play the initial reopening. Trefis Team, Forbes, 9 Nov. 2021 No matter your tier, the sale ends on November 15, giving you anywhere from six to 10 days to stock up at a discount. Karina Hoshikawa,, 5 Nov. 2021 Rams general manager Les Snead made since January to stock a roster capable of making a run to Super Bowl LVI at SoFi Stadium. Los Angeles Times, 3 Nov. 2021 Peaceful requests to resolve this have been unsuccessful; in the late 1970s, male inmates at a correctional facility in Texarkana, Texas, petitioned the warden to stock commissary cosmetic products for Black inmates. Zara Stone, CNN, 2 Nov. 2021 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

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.

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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

23 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Stock.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Nov. 2021.

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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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