swap

verb
\ˈswäp \
swapped; swapping

Definition of swap 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to give in trade : barter

b : exchange sense 2

2 : to take turns in telling swap stories

intransitive verb

: to make an exchange

swap

noun

Definition of swap (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act, instance, or process of exchanging one thing for another

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from swap

Verb

swapper noun

Examples of swap in a Sentence

Verb

He swapped his cupcake for a candy bar. I swapped seats with my sister so she could see the stage better. I liked her blue notebook and she liked my red one, so we swapped.

Noun

They made the swap in secret. we made a swap: I'll do the dishes tonight and she'll do them for me tomorrow
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Gender fluidity, and its embrace by the many designers now blurring lines between menswear and womenswear—and swapping clothes between male and female models on their runways—has certainly been a catalyst for the new hirsuteness. Maya Singer, Vogue, "To Shave, or Not to Shave? How a New Generation of Women Are Embracing Body Hair," 10 Dec. 2018 When unforeseen maintenance issues do occur or other operational issues get in the way, United is using machine learning to help swap out aircraft. Alyson Behr, Ars Technica, "More than an auto-pilot, AI charts its course in aviation," 5 Dec. 2018 Thus far Cheniere has swapped the U.S. volumes for supplies from other countries such as Australian LNG to be shipped to China, helping avoid the Chinese tariff on LNG originating in the U.S. Sarah Mcfarlane, WSJ, "Thaw With China Could Boost Frozen U.S. Gas Projects," 4 Dec. 2018 Instead, Day suggests swapping your body scrub for a Clarisonic facial brush and a salicylic acid cleanser, like Neutrogena Pink Grapefruit Body Wash, which has 2 percent salicylic acid to penetrate follicles and chamomile to soothe skin. Chloe Metzger, Allure, "How to Treat Keratosis Pilaris (aka "Chicken Skin") on the Back of Your Arms," 31 Oct. 2018 The Duchess kept on her purple sweater, but swapped the skirt for dark jeans, which blogger Meghan's Mirror reports are by Mother denim. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Meghan Markle Finishes Out the Royal Tour of New Zealand Wearing Prince Harry's Jacket," 31 Oct. 2018 Spice up your glassware this Halloween by swapping typical glasses for vials. Elle Decor Editors, ELLE Decor, "20 Halloween Party Ideas So Sophisticated They’ll Scare You," 18 Oct. 2018 In practice, this means swapping out all base products for an 11-step skin care routine. Sarah Wu, Glamour, "This Highlighter Is Better Than an 11-Step Skin Care Routine," 17 Oct. 2018 The pair swapped messages and pictures for around a year and the tone eventually became flirty, the woman said. Greg Norman, Fox News, "Fake Bruce Springsteen, claiming troubles with 'gold stash,' reportedly scams woman out of more than $10G," 27 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The offer includes up to $14 billion in cash, with the remainder coming in a swap for new shares. Micah Maidenberg, WSJ, "Dell Sweetens Tracking-Stock Deal After Facing Shareholder Pressure," 15 Nov. 2018 George Hill also was acquired from Sacramento in this swap. cleveland.com, "Rodney Hood: 10 things to know about the Cavaliers forward," 14 May 2018 Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco was involved in a swap involving a mid-first-round pick, too. Jonas Shaffer, baltimoresun.com, "Ravens could be stuck in no man's land with potential first-round trade partners," 24 Apr. 2018 Emmanuel Mudiay will likely make his Knicks debut Sunday after the Denver Nuggets dealt him to New York in a three-team swap on deadline day. Jim Ayello, Indianapolis Star, "Cory Joseph gives Pacers defensive edge," 10 Feb. 2018 Cavs add Rodney Hood, George Hill in three-team deal (Feb. 8) The Cavaliers traded for Utah's Rodney Hood and Sacramento's George Hill in a three-team swap that continues to overhaul their roster ahead of the deadline. Detroit Free Press, "NBA trade deadline tracker: Dwyane Wade traded back to Miami," 1 Feb. 2018 Span was traded to Tampa Bay last month in a swap that brought new third baseman Evan Longoria to the Giants. Janie Mccauley, Houston Chronicle, "CF Austin Jackson agrees to $6M, 2-year deal with Giants," 23 Jan. 2018 Attendees are encouraged to bring vinyl gems from home to participate in a swap. Steve Heisler, Chicago Reader, "Arts / Do This The Chicago Polar Dash and more of the best things to do in Chicago this weekend," 5 Jan. 2018 Western governments, including the United States, have largely condemned Sirisena’s bizarre power swap. Jen Kirby, Vox, "Dueling prime ministers and assassination plots: an escalating crisis in Sri Lanka," 1 Nov. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of swap

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun

1625, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for swap

Verb

Middle English swappen to strike; from the practice of striking hands in closing a business deal

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about swap

Statistics for swap

Last Updated

19 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for swap

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for swap

swap

noun

Financial Definition of swap

What It Is

A swap is an agreement between two parties to exchange a series of future cash flows.

How It Works

Swaps are financial agreements to exchange cash flows. Swaps can be based on interest rates, stock indices, foreign currency exchange rates and even commodities prices.

Let's walk through an example of a plain vanilla swap, which is simply an interest rate swap in which one party pays a fixed interest rate and the other pays a floating interest rate.

The party paying the floating rate "leg" of the swap believes that interest rates will go down. If they do, the party's interest payments will go down as well.

The party paying the fixed rate "leg" of the swap doesn't want to take the chance that rates will increase, so they lock in their interest payments with a fixed rate.

Company XYZ issues $10 million in 15-year corporate bonds with a variable interest rate of LIBOR + 150 basis points. LIBOR is currently 3%, so Company XYZ pays bondholders 4.5%.

After selling the bonds, an analyst at Company XYZ decides there's reason to believe LIBOR will increase in the near term. Company XYZ doesn't want to be exposed to an increase in LIBOR, so it enters into a swap agreement with Investor ABC.

Company XYZ agrees to pay Investor ABC 4.58% on $10,000,000 each year for 15 years. Investor ABC agrees to pay Company XYZ LIBOR + 1.5% on $10,000,000 per year for 15 years.  Note that the floating rate payments that XYZ receives from ABC will always match the payments they need to make to their bondholders.

Investor ABC thinks that interest rates are going to go down. He is willing to accept fixed rates from Company XYZ

To do this, Company XYZ structures a swap of the future interest payments with an investor willing to buy the stream of interest payments at this variable rate and pay a fixed amount for each period.  At the time of the swap, the amount to be paid over the life of the debt is the same.


The investor is betting that the variable interest rate will go down, lowering his or her interest cost, but the interest payments from Company XYZ will be the same, allowing a gain (i.e. arbitrage) on the difference.

Why It Matters

Interest rate swaps have been one of the most successful derivatives ever introduced. They are widely used by corporations, financial institutions and governments.

According to the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the notional principal of over-the-counter derivatives market was an astounding $615 trillion in the second half of 2009. Of that amount, swaps represented over $349 trillion of the total.

Source: Investing Answers

swap

verb

English Language Learners Definition of swap

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to give something to someone and receive something in return : to trade or exchange (things)

: to replace (something) with something else

swap

noun

English Language Learners Definition of swap (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act of giving or taking one thing in return for another thing : a trade or exchange

swap

verb
\ˈswäp \
swapped; swapping

Kids Definition of swap

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to give in exchange : make an exchange : trade

swap

noun

Kids Definition of swap (Entry 2 of 2)

Keep scrolling for more

swap

noun
\ˈswäp\

Legal Definition of swap 

1 : an exchange of securities

2 : a derivative contract in which two parties (as corporations) agree to exchange rates especially relating to debt

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on swap

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with swap

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for swap

Spanish Central: Translation of swap

Nglish: Translation of swap for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of swap for Arabic Speakers

Comments on swap

What made you want to look up swap? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a knickknack or trinket

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!