trade

noun
\ ˈtrād How to pronounce trade (audio) \

Definition of trade

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a(1) : the business of buying and selling or bartering commodities : commerce
(2) : business, market novelties for the tourist trade did a good trade in small appliances
b obsolete : dealings between persons or groups
2a : an act or instance of trading : transaction also : an exchange of property usually without use of money
b : a firm's customers : clientele
c : the group of firms engaged in a business or industry
3a : an occupation requiring manual or mechanical skill : craft
b : the business or work in which one engages regularly : occupation
c : the persons engaged in an occupation, business, or industry
4 : a customary course of action : practice thy sin's not accidental, but a trade— William Shakespeare
5 : trade wind usually used in plural
6 : a publication intended for persons in the entertainment business usually used in plural
7a obsolete : a path traversed : way
b archaic : a track or trail left by a person or animal : tread sense 4

trade

verb
traded; trading

Definition of trade (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to give one thing in exchange for another
2a : to engage in the exchange, purchase, or sale of goods
b : to make one's purchases : shop trades at his store
4 obsolete : to have dealings : negotiate

transitive verb

1a : to give in exchange for another commodity : barter also : to make an exchange of traded places
b : to engage in frequent buying and selling of (stocks, commodities, etc.) usually in search of quick profits
2 archaic : to do business with
trade on
: to take often unscrupulous advantage of : exploit traded on their influence … in securing special favors— T. C. Pease

trade

adjective

Definition of trade (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : of, relating to, or used in trade
2a : intended for or limited to persons in a business or industry a trade publication trade sales
b : serving others in the same business rather than the ultimate user or consumer a trade printing house
3 or less commonly trades : of, composed of, or representing the trades or trade unions a trade committee
4 : having a larger softcover format than that of a mass-market paperback and usually sold only in bookstores trade paperbacks also : of or relating to the publishing of such books

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Other Words from trade

Verb

tradable or less commonly tradeable \ ˈtrā-​də-​bəl How to pronounce tradeable (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for trade

Noun

business, commerce, trade, industry, traffic mean activity concerned with the supplying and distribution of commodities. business may be an inclusive term but specifically designates the activities of those engaged in the purchase or sale of commodities or in related financial transactions. commerce and trade imply the exchange and transportation of commodities. industry applies to the producing of commodities, especially by manufacturing or processing, usually on a large scale. traffic applies to the operation and functioning of public carriers of goods and persons.

Examples of trade in a Sentence

Noun

the trade between the two countries Trade accounts for half of our gross national product. The Tigers made a few good trades this season and picked up some promising players.

Verb

If you don't like your seat, I'll trade with you. I traded seats with her halfway through the show. He was traded to the Yankees. They traded him to the Broncos. I traded my pen for a pencil and kept writing. Their firm specializes in trading bonds. She mostly trades in stocks.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged more than 600 points Friday after the latest escalation in the trade war between the U.S. and China rattled investors. Washington Post, "US stocks tumble as US-China trade war rattles investors," 24 Aug. 2019 Speculation as to why asset prices are falling range from President Trump’s trade wars to economic softness in China. Fortune, "Letter From Pebble Beach: What a Disappointing Classic Car Auction Tells us About the 1%—and the Economy," 24 Aug. 2019 The German economy, for example, appears to be headed toward a recession and analysts say the trade war isn’t helping. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "Trump cited this law to order US companies out of China. It isn’t that simple," 24 Aug. 2019 The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged more than 600 points Friday after the latest escalation in the trade war between the U.S. and China rattled investors. Joe Mcdonald, chicagotribune.com, "Trump says U.S. companies ‘hereby ordered’ to start leaving China, both nations boost tariffs; Dow down more than 600 points; president calls Fed chair ‘enemy’," 24 Aug. 2019 With global interest rates falling, trade wars raging and markets jittery, the months ahead may be tricky for banks and wealth managers everywhere. The Economist, "Tidjane Thiam’s overhaul of Credit Suisse is paying off," 24 Aug. 2019 China is not part of the G-7, but it is expected to dominate the conversation this year after the world's two largest economies dramatically escalated their trade war on Friday. Paula Reid, CBS News, "Trump arrives in France for G-7 summit after escalating trade war with China," 24 Aug. 2019 China believes its technology sector should have a fair shake at dominating and appears willing to endure a bitter trade war with Trump to achieve it. Nic Robertson, CNN, "Boris Johnson stakes future on Donald Trump after Brexit. The gamble may break Britain," 24 Aug. 2019 Leaders are facing the prospect of a global economic downturn amid an escalating trade war between the U.S. and China. Fox News, "Trump talks up ‘special relationship’ with Macron, hours after threat to slap tariffs on French wine," 24 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Ed Kush has taken over for excellent right guard Kevin Zeitler (traded to New York). Terry Pluto, cleveland.com, "Cleveland Browns: Finding leaders, the big punter decision, the O-line -- Terry Pluto," 8 Sep. 2019 The teams traded fumbles, before UConn kicker Clayton Harris converted his third field goal of the day in as many attempts to cut the deficit to eight points. Alex Putterman, courant.com, "UConn football keeps game close behind freshman quarterback, falls just short in 31-23 loss to Illinois," 8 Sep. 2019 Different situations, of course, but that might be the most talented trio of players a team has ever traded and/or released in a 12-month span. Jon Schultz, SFChronicle.com, "Raiders cut Antonio Brown and Twitter reacts: ‘He thinks he’s the victim’," 7 Sep. 2019 And when the game actually began, and two teams with undeniable professional talent starting swapping goal-line stands for punishing midair hits, and trading perfectly thrown deep balls for pirouetting catches? Mike Finger, ExpressNews.com, "As Longhorns stumble against LSU, a plan remains," 7 Sep. 2019 In trading absent star Jadeveon Clowney to Seattle, Houston took a $7 million cap hit. Jarrett Bell, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Six NFL rookie coaches are on the hot seat for the first time as season opens," 7 Sep. 2019 Davis practiced at left tackle this past week, and is viewed as the front-runner to replace Laremy Tunsil, who Miami traded to the Houston Texans over a week ago. Omar Kelly, sun-sentinel.com, "Dolphins sign O-lineman Jesse Davis to a three-year, $15 million extension," 7 Sep. 2019 These are often traded internationally and show up in everyday products like toothpaste, shampoo, dog food and granola bars. Mikaela Weisse, Twin Cities, "Mikaela Weisse: Five myths about tropical rainforests," 4 Sep. 2019 Hedberg once had two clients who traded dreaded holiday tasks, to take a little off each other’s plates. Lizz Schumer, Good Housekeeping, "Beat Holiday Stress by Making No — or Few — Plans This Year," 3 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The physical components of that particular device were not trade secrets or protected by federal law from being disclosed, the court filing said. Chris Fuchs, NBC News, "Scientist Formerly Accused of Spying Sues Alleging FBI Agent Falsified Evidence," 11 May 2017

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 7b

Verb

1553, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 4

Adjective

1625, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for trade

Noun

Middle English, from Middle Low German; akin to Old High German trata track, course, Old English tredan to tread

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Learn More about trade

Statistics for trade

Last Updated

27 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for trade

The first known use of trade was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for trade

trade

noun

English Language Learners Definition of trade

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the activity or process of buying, selling, or exchanging goods or services
: the amount of things or services that are bought and sold : the money made by buying and selling things or services
: the act of exchanging one thing for another

trade

verb

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

: to give something to someone and receive something in return : to give something in exchange for something else
US, sports : to give (one of your players) to another team in exchange for one of their players
: to stop using (one thing) and start using another

trade

noun
\ ˈtrād How to pronounce trade (audio) \

Kids Definition of trade

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the business or work in which a person takes part regularly : occupation
2 : the business of buying and selling items : commerce
3 : an occupation requiring manual or mechanical skill : craft
4 : an act of trading : transaction
5 : the persons working in a business or industry
6 : a firm's customers

trade

verb
traded; trading

Kids Definition of trade (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to give in exchange for something else I'll trade my apple for your banana.
2 : to take part in the exchange, purchase, or sale of goods Our country trades in many parts of the world.
3 : to deal regularly as a customer Because of bad service, I don't trade there anymore.

trade

noun

Legal Definition of trade

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : the business or work in which one engages regularly
b : an occupation requiring manual or mechanical skill
c : the persons engaged in an occupation
2 : the business of buying and selling or bartering commodities
3 : an act or instance of trading also : an exchange of property usually without use of money

trade

verb
traded; trading

Legal Definition of trade (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to engage in the exchange, purchase, or sale of goods
2 : to give one thing in exchange for another
3 : to engage in selling

transitive verb

1 : to give in exchange for another commodity also : to make an exchange of
2 : to engage in frequent buying and selling of (as stocks or commodities) usually in search of quick profits

Other Words from trade

tradable also tradeable adjective
trader noun

trade

adjective

Legal Definition of trade (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : of, relating to, or used in trade or in a particular trade or business
2 also trades : of, composed of, or representing the trades or labor unions

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More from Merriam-Webster on trade

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with trade

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for trade

Spanish Central: Translation of trade

Nglish: Translation of trade for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of trade for Arabic Speakers

Comments on trade

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