treasury

noun trea·sury \ ˈtre-zh(ə-)rē , ˈtrā- \
Updated on: 17 Nov 2017

Definition of treasury

plural treasuries
1 a :a place in which stores of wealth are kept
b :the place of deposit and disbursement of collected funds; especially :one where public revenues are deposited, kept, and disbursed
c :funds kept in such a depository
2 capitalized
a :a governmental department in charge of finances and especially the collection, management, and expenditure of public revenues
b :the building in which the business of such a governmental department is transacted
3 capitalized :a government security (such as a note or bill) issued by the Treasury
4 :a repository for treasures
  • a treasury of poems
5 obsolete :treasure

Examples of treasury in a Sentence

  1. A government official has been accused of stealing from the nation's treasury.

  2. The fees are deposited into the state's treasury.

  3. A part of the nation's treasury is spent on space exploration.

  4. The author has collected a treasury of facts and lore about horses.

Recent Examples of treasury from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of treasury

Middle English tresorie, from Anglo-French, from tresor treasure


Financial Definition of TREASURY

treasury

What It Is

Treasuries (sometimes spelled "treasurys") refer to all the tradable and negotiable debt obligations issued by a country's government. Broadly speaking, when an investor is referring to "Treasuries," he or she is referring to U.S. Treasuries.

How It Works

U.S. Treasuries can be divided into three main categories: Treasury bills (T-bills), Treasury notes (T-notes) and Treasury bonds (T-bonds) which are designated according to their lengths of maturity.

Treasury bills are short-term, zero-coupon bonds that are issued in maturities with lengths of 4, 13 or 26 weeks. Treasury notes are intermediate-term bonds issued by a federal government with maturities of 2, 3, 5 or 10 years.  Treasury bonds are long-term, semi-annual coupon bonds issued by a federal government. Their maturities range from 10 to 30 years.

U.S. Treasuries are considered the safest investments in the world because the U.S. government has never defaulted on any debt it has issued. For this reason, Treasuries serve as a benchmark for the risk-free rate of return when determining the amount of expected risk for other types of assets.

Why It Matters

Treasuries are savings vehicles for governments, corporations, banks and individuals around the world. They are also an important instrument in monetary policy, because the sale and repurchase of them allows central banks to control the money supply and thus make adjustments to a nation's economy.

Treasuries are some of the world's safest investments, and therefore, have lower yields than more risky investments. They are appropriate for the most risk-averse investors who are mainly interested in preserving capital or having a steady stream of income. The rating of a nation's treasuries by credit rating agencies is an essential indicator of the financial stability of that nation.



TREASURY Defined for English Language Learners

treasury

noun

Definition of treasury for English Language Learners

  • : the place where the money of a government, club, etc., is kept; also : the money itself

  • : a place in a church, castle, palace, etc., where money and valuable objects are kept

  • : a group of valuable things that are related in some way


TREASURY Defined for Kids

treasury

noun trea·sury \ ˈtre-zhə-rē \

Definition of treasury for Students

plural treasuries
1 :a place in which money and valuable objects are kept
2 :a place where money collected is kept and paid out
3 capitalized :a government department in charge of finances

Law Dictionary

treasury

noun trea·sury \ ˈtre-zhə-rē, ˈtrā- \

legal Definition of treasury

plural treasuries
1 a :a place in which stores of wealth are kept
b :the place of deposit and disbursement of collected funds; especially :one where public revenues are deposited, kept, and disbursed
c :funds kept in such a depository
2 capitalized
a :a governmental department in charge of finances and especially the collection, management, and expenditure of public revenues
b :the building in which the business of such a governmental department is transacted
3 capitalized :a government security (as a note or bill) issued by the Treasury


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