tail·​wind | \ ˈtāl-ˌwind How to pronounce tailwind (audio) \
plural tailwinds

Definition of tailwind

1 : a wind having the same general direction as a course of movement (as of an aircraft)
2 : a force or influence that advances progress toward an improved condition … the strengthening housing market should be providing tailwinds for home improvement retailers.— Katherine Peralta Medicare reform is a thorny problem even when the political tailwinds are favorable.— Russ Wiles

Examples of tailwind in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Tennessee gives the Tide a tailwind into a scenario that’s troubled the program. Michael Casagrande | Mcasagrande@al.com, al, "What clicked for Alabama basketball in 3-game winning streak," 5 Jan. 2021 At the start of 2020, investors worried the market might have less tailwind as the Fed stopped cutting interest rates and the economic jolt from the Trump tax cuts ran out. Anneken Tappe, CNN, "Markets started 2020 riding high, and they'll end it even higher," 31 Dec. 2020 Economists predict that some of that savings will be spent in 2021, creating a major tailwind. Washington Post, "The stock market is ending 2020 in record territory, even as virus surges and millions go hungry," 31 Dec. 2020 The combination of easy money and an abrupt shift in economic activity that favored digital commerce, communication, education and business activity gave technology firms — both startups and big companies — an unexpected tailwind. NBC News, "Wall Street minted 56 new billionaires since the pandemic began — but many families are left behind," 30 Dec. 2020 That amounts to a powerful tailwind for the stock market. New York Times, "Market Edges Toward Euphoria, Despite Pandemic’s Toll," 27 Dec. 2020 But the stationary bike-maker clearly has its eyes set on the next phase of its growth, once the tailwind of the pandemic fades. Phil Wahba, Fortune, "How Peloton’s $420 million Precor deal positions the company for post-pandemic life," 22 Dec. 2020 Americans continue to create new businesses in surprising numbers, a potential tailwind for an economy that this spring saw its highest jobless rate since the Great Depression. Michael Sasso, Bloomberg.com, "Covid Recession Spawning Entrepreneurs in U.S. Amid Joblessness," 14 Oct. 2020 Times aren’t normal with Covid-19 looming in the backdrop, but perhaps surprisingly, the pandemic is now almost acting like a tailwind to underwriting results. Telis Demos, WSJ, "Travelers Is Ready for Post-Pandemic Journey," 20 Oct. 2020

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

1897, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler

The first known use of tailwind was in 1897

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Last Updated

14 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Tailwind.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tailwind. Accessed 24 Feb. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of tailwind

: a wind that blows in the same direction as something (such as a ship or an airplane) that is moving forward

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