turn·​over | \ ˈtərn-ˌō-vər How to pronounce turnover (audio) \

Definition of turnover

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a(1) : the amount received in sales for a stated period
(2) : the ratio of sales for a stated period to average inventory
(3) : a cycle of purchase, sale, and replacement of a stock of goods
b : the number of persons hired within a period to replace those leaving or dropped from a workforce also : the ratio of this number to the number in the average force maintained
c : movement (as of goods or people) into, through, and out of a place
2 : the amount of business done especially : the volume of shares traded on a stock exchange
3 : the act or an instance of a team's losing possession of a ball through error or a minor violation of the rules (as in basketball or football)
4 : a filled pastry made by folding half of the crust over the other half
5 : an act or result of turning over : upset
6 : a turning from one side, place, or direction to its opposite : shift, reversal
7 : a reorganization with a view to a shift in personnel : shake-up
8 : something that is turned over
9 : the continuous process of loss and replacement of a constituent (such as a cell or tissue) of a living system



Definition of turnover (Entry 2 of 3)

: capable of being turned over

turn over

turned over; turning over; turns over

Definition of turn over (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to turn from an upright position : overturn
b : rotate turn over a stiff valve with a wrench also : to cause (an internal combustion engine) to begin firing
2 : deliver, surrender I'm turning the job over to you also : to lose possession of turned the ball over three times
3a : to do business to the amount of turning over $1000 a week
b : to receive and dispose of (a stock of merchandise)
4 : to search (clothes, papers, etc.) by lifting or moving one by one
5 : to read or examine (something, such as a book) slowly or idly

intransitive verb

1 : upset, capsize
2a : rotate
b of an engine : to have crankshaft rotation especially by external means (as by a starter) the engine turned over but didn't start
3a of one's stomach : to heave with nausea
b of one's heart : to seem to leap or lurch convulsively with sudden fright
turn over a new leaf
: to make a change for the better especially in one's way of living

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Examples of turnover in a Sentence

Noun The company had an increase in turnover this quarter. The company has a high turnover rate. We want to find ways to speed up inventory turnover. Verb reluctantly turned the ship over to the first mate while he went below to try to stop the leak turned the evidence over to the police
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun His passing attempt was picked off, and Kubalik converted that turnover into a 2-0 lead. Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Red Wings battle back to earn a point in 3-2 overtime loss to Blackhawks," 16 Feb. 2021 There was high turnover on staff, especially in the admissions and advancement departments. Freep.com, "Support quality local journalism like this by becoming a subscriber.," 12 Feb. 2021 Trice shot 0 for 5 with six assists, four rebounds and only one turnover. Steve Megargee, Star Tribune, "No. 19 Wisconsin returns to winning ways over Penn St, 72-56," 2 Feb. 2021 The result was an incredibly efficient performance — 10 of 16 from the field, 7 of 11 beyond the arc, and only one turnover. Eric Walden, The Salt Lake Tribune, "‘Struggling’ Bojan Bogdanovic gets aggressive as Utah Jazz knock off Mavericks again for 11th straight win," 30 Jan. 2021 The Cowboys are facing massive turnover in their secondary this offseason, and are in dire need of help. Dallas News, "2021 NFL mock draft roundup: See who experts have the Dallas Cowboys selecting at No. 10," 26 Jan. 2021 This is the time of year where most fanbases with head coach and GM turnover are hopeful. Stephanie Stradley, Chron, "Stephanie Stradley discusses Texans PSLs, tickets, feelings," 5 Feb. 2021 For any normal firm, these might be cause for a public relations blitz or, indeed, an executive turnover, but these are barely blips on the Amazon radar. Jacob Silverman, The New Republic, "Amazon Won’t Stop Until It’s Devoured the Economy," 3 Feb. 2021 It’s these skills that make his third-period turnover that led to a Columbus goal worth it. Matthew Defranks, Dallas News, "Dynamic duo: John Klingberg, Joe Pavelski make it look easy in Stars’ win over Blue Jackets," 2 Feb. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The court in an unsigned order denied Trump's request for the justices to halt a lower court ruling instructing him to turn over materials to Cyrus Vance, the Manhattan district attorney. Nicholas Rowan, Washington Examiner, "Supreme Court paves way for New York prosecutor to review Trump's taxes," 22 Feb. 2021 The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, in New York, ruled against that argument and said state prosecutors may require third parties to turn over a sitting president’s financial records for use in a grand jury investigation. New York Times, "Supreme Court Denies Trump’s Final Bid to Block Release of Tax Returns," 22 Feb. 2021 For example, former agents and prosecutors said, when a company offered to voluntarily turn over records, Garland ordered investigators to instead obtain the information with a subpoena. Del Quentin Wilber Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "Oklahoma City bombing provides insights into how Garland would run Justice Department," 21 Feb. 2021 After months of litigation, a judge ordered state health officials to turn over the data and to pay the Empire Center’s legal fees. Michael Ruiz, Fox News, "Cuomo admin says total coronavirus deaths in nursing homes is even higher," 12 Feb. 2021 After attorneys told Casebier to turn over all records and documents from Seacoast, Casebier gave them the physical copy of the list. Gabrielle Russon, orlandosentinel.com, "Rival Florida banks that feuded over employees, trade secrets settle lawsuit," 31 Dec. 2020 Accusing Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield of stonewalling his investigation, Clyburn issued subpoenas to compel them to turn over reams of documents and emails by Dec. 30. Ricardo Alonso-zaldivar, chicagotribune.com, "Trump political appointees tried to block or change CDC coronavirus reports, House panel says," 21 Dec. 2020 Accusing Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield of stonewalling his investigation, Clyburn issued subpoenas compelling them to turn over reams of documents and emails by Dec. 30. Arkansas Online, "Probe: Trump officials attacked CDC virus reports," 21 Dec. 2020 Prosecutors accused the department of failing to turn over complete and unredacted training records to the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, the chief investigating agency. Chao Xiong, Star Tribune, "Prosecutors: No charges against officers in Chiasher Vueshooting in north Minneapolis," 21 Dec. 2020

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 5


circa 1849, in the meaning defined above


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

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Time Traveler for turnover

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for turnover

Last Updated

22 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Turnover.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/turnover. Accessed 1 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for turnover



English Language Learners Definition of turnover

: the amount of money that is received in sales by a store or company
: the rate at which people leave a place, company, etc., and are replaced by others
: the rate at which the goods in a store are sold and replaced by other goods


turn·​over | \ ˈtərn-ˌō-vər How to pronounce turnover (audio) \

Kids Definition of turnover

: a filled pastry with one half of the crust turned over the other


turn·​over | \ ˈtər-ˌnō-vər How to pronounce turnover (audio) \

Medical Definition of turnover

: the continuous process of loss and replacement of a constituent (as a neurotransmitter, cell, or tissue) of a living system protein turnover in various pathological states— J. C. Waterlow hyperthyroidism accelerates bone turnover and shortens the normal bone remodeling cycle— Richard Sadovsky

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