sub·​si·​dy | \ ˈsəb-sə-dē How to pronounce subsidy (audio) , -zə-\
plural subsidies

Definition of subsidy

: a grant or gift of money: such as
a : a sum of money formerly granted by the British Parliament to the crown and raised by special taxation
b : money granted by one state to another
c : a grant by a government to a private person or company to assist an enterprise deemed advantageous to the public

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Examples of subsidy in a Sentence

The city is increasing subsidies for public transit. government subsidies for farmers in case of crop failure

Recent Examples on the Web

The cuts would come from farm safety net programs including commodity subsidies and federal nutrition programs. Jesse Newman, WSJ, "Farmers Take a Hit in President’s Draft Budget," 11 Mar. 2019 Tech leaders there, working in offices that benefitted from public subsidies, are mostly pushing back against measures to levy taxes on companies to combat the city’s significant homeless crisis. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Big cities courting big tech helped define 2018," 18 Dec. 2018 Instead, USTelecom repeated its argument that the government should increase subsidies to private ISPs in parts of the US where broadband is lacking. Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, "AT&T/Verizon lobby misunderstands arrow of time, makes impossible claim," 6 Dec. 2018 As an incentive, the provincial government offered generous subsidies to farmers both for growing soybeans and for switching their fields to soy from corn. Raymond Zhong,, "China’s taste for soybeans is a weak spot in trade war with Trump," 9 July 2018 After Ayatollah Khomeini’s takeover, the new state nationalized most major sectors and built elements of a welfare state, providing subsidies for fuel and university tuition. Sune Engel Rasmussen, WSJ, "As Iran Marks Its Anniversary, Economic Woes Cloud a Pitch for Unity," 10 Feb. 2019 The court said that subsidies for nuclear energy proposed by Illinois don't cause any interference with federal control over interstate power markets, which is prohibited. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "US Congress passes bill to help advanced nuclear power," 16 Sep. 2018 Also discussed was the prospect for seeking employer subsidies for the route serving Perryman. Allan Vought, The Aegis, "Councilman urges changes in Harford Transit Link routes, times to aid working people," 30 Apr. 2018 Congress passed the Urban Mass Transit Act in 1964, providing generous subsidies to cities to improve their transportation systems, such as the future Washington Metro and BART in San Francisco. Patrick Cooke, WSJ, "‘Romance of the Rails’ Review: Hear That Lonesome Whistle?," 23 Jan. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for subsidy

Middle English subsidie, from Anglo-French, from Latin subsidium reserve troops, support, assistance, from sub- near + sedēre to sit — more at sub-, sit

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Statistics for subsidy

Last Updated

21 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for subsidy

The first known use of subsidy was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for subsidy



English Language Learners Definition of subsidy

: money that is paid usually by a government to keep the price of a product or service low or to help a business or organization to continue to function

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