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 While titanium isn’t known to be particularly conductive of heat, it was likely chosen as a trade-off in thermal efficiency. Gordon Mah Ung, PCWorld, "Asus and Nvidia's ProArt StudioBook One wields Quadro RTX 6000 graphics power," 4 Sep. 2019 These are stark choices, but no one in the press is discussing these trade-offs. Benjamin Studebaker, The New Republic, "The Real Stakes of Trump’s Trade War With China," 27 Aug. 2019 At least twice this year, a fall in stock prices has prompted him to moderate his line in the trade war with China. John Cassidy, The New Yorker, "Trump’s Awful Middle East Policies Are Coming Back to Haunt Him," 17 Sep. 2019 Buyers might also be unsettled by uncertain economic news, including volatility in the stock market, a looming trade war and predictions of a recession in the offing. oregonlive, "Homebuyers may have an edge as sales flatten," 17 Sep. 2019 Various trade groups representing manufacturers, pharmacies and patients with disabilities predict moving forward, other states will enact similar policies, and prices will go up for that class of drugs across the board. Anastassia Gliadkovskaya, Fortune, "New York State Drew Up a Tax to Punish Opioid Makers—But Found Some Unanticipated Side Effects," 16 Sep. 2019 Today, the Alliance of Independent Music Merchants, a trade group for the industry, counts 63 members in the U.S. The first big challenge for smaller, independent stores came in the form of chain stores like Guitar Center. Shwanika Narayan, SFChronicle.com, "One of the last music stores in San Francisco is closing," 14 Sep. 2019 The overall pet population, AVMA said, included 77 million dogs and 58 million cats - significantly lower than what the pet trade group cited. Karin Brulliard, chicagotribune.com, "How many Americans have pets? An investigation of fuzzy statistics," 13 Sep. 2019 On Thursday, the mayor picked the trade war with China. Chris Sikich, Indianapolis Star, "Takeaways from Buttigieg's performance at Thursday's Democratic debate," 13 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Neither side wants to see the return of a hard border between the two, which would be disruptive to trade and Ireland’s economy. BostonGlobe.com, "There have been few outward signs of progress to suggest the two sides will find a way to sort out the thorniest of issues — the question of how to handle the Irish border in a post-Brexit Europe — and European negotiators are still waiting for the British government to present a new plan.," 17 Sep. 2019 Odell Beckham made the kind of one-handed catch that showed Browns fans why GM John Dorsey worked so hard to trade for the receiver. Terry Pluto, cleveland.com, "Cleveland Browns Halftime Scribbles: Leading, but struggling with Jets," 16 Sep. 2019 Peterborough is looking to trade Merkley after the Petes acquired him from Guelph last season. Curtis Pashelka, The Mercury News, "Sharks camp: Pete DeBoer says Aaron Dell “needs to deliver”," 15 Sep. 2019 This Dolphins’ team is substantially weaker than a year ago, so bad that players reportedly were looking to be traded after Week 1’s embarrassing loss. Ryan R. Bonini, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "New England Patriots at Miami Dolphins Week 2 odds, picks and best bets [UPDATED]," 15 Sep. 2019 Consider all the negativity that surrounded his stormy exit from the Oakland Raiders and before that, incidents that hasted the willingness of the Pittsburgh Steelers to trade away the best wide receiver in football. Jarrett Bell, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Turns out the right thing is to let Antonio Brown play … pending further review," 13 Sep. 2019 Part of that is down to the shift towards services, some of which are hard to trade. The Economist, "The economic policy at the heart of Europe is creaking," 12 Sep. 2019 That means the Rockies would have to be willing to trade some real talent (prospects of veterans) to acquire pitching. Patrick Saunders, The Denver Post, "Rockies Mailbag: Colorado’s bad record doesn’t trump the “experience” of Coors Field," 10 Sep. 2019 Literary biographers—writers who devote their lives to other writers’ lives—are a confraternity of old soldiers who like to trade battle stories. Judith Thurman, The New Yorker, "James Atlas’s Life in Life-Writing," 9 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

5 Nov 2019

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
How to pronounce trade (audio)

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

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for trade

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with 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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