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

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 Last year, defenseman Mike Matheson had a league-high 135 turnovers. Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, "Hyde: This is the Florida Panthers’ year (and I really, really mean it this time) | Commentary," 12 Sep. 2019 Before the unit was expanded, high turnover among lawyers left the city struggling to prosecute violations as inspectors’ ranks ballooned. Grace Ashford, New York Times, "The Law Was Aimed at Deadly Machinery. It Hit Her Washer.," 9 Sep. 2019 Some panelists said part of the problem is high turnover among pilots, making training and safety procedures especially important. Alex Demarban, Anchorage Daily News, "NTSB comes to Alaska to find solutions to string of air crashes," 7 Sep. 2019 The department has faced high turnover during his tenure as well, Braucks said. David Clarey, Twin Cities, "Report: Hastings fire chief’s resignation preceded by improper use of firetruck," 6 Sep. 2019 Saavedra’s arrival in 2014, coming as a consensus choice of warring board factions who needed a truce, had brought an end to three years of dizzyingly high superintendent turnover. Krista Torralva, ExpressNews.com, "Departing South San ISD super to get $187K in separation agreement," 4 Sep. 2019 Others are coping with overcrowded classrooms and high turnover. Kamala Harris, The Denver Post, "Kamala Harris: Colorado teachers’ pay is unacceptably low. Here’s how I’ll fix it.," 30 Aug. 2019 If a position typically experiences high turnover, your business might boost retention by offering new employees a modest increase after several months. Tom Cooney And Crystal Faulkner, Cincinnati.com, "BusinessWise: Understand best practices when considering pay raises in your business," 26 Aug. 2019 The district is hoping Brown will begin to turn around the school, which has long struggled with high leadership turnover and low academic performance. San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego Unified touts health and wellness on first day of school," 26 Aug. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The court order comes after another big loss for Mr. Trump, after a federal appeals court in New York ruled Monday that the president's tax returns can be turned over to state criminal investigators. Kathryn Watson, CBS News, "New York judge orders Trump to pay $2 million for misusing foundation funds," 7 Nov. 2019 Trump's battle to keep his taxes private may go all the way to the Supreme Court A federal appeals court ruled Monday that the president's tax returns must be turned over to Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance. Petra Cahill, NBC News, "Deadly Mexico ambush, Trump's taxes and a second chance for Oklahomans: The Morning Rundown," 5 Nov. 2019 But Castro ordered that Jones be given copies of her personal items, which Babbitt said had been turned over. Elizabeth Zavala, ExpressNews.com, "Judge again rules convicted killer Genene Jones can’t get Bible, documents back," 1 Nov. 2019 In other words, the town would have to be turned over to the Soviets at the end of the war. Greg Miller, Smithsonian, "The Untold Story of the Secret Mission to Seize Nazi Map Data," 23 Oct. 2019 Viking Cleaning cleans at the job sites during the course of construction and also does the final cleaning when the house is finished and ready to be turned over to the new homeowner. Karen Pilarski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Cleaning employee burglarized homes under construction to support drug habit, complaint says," 18 Oct. 2019 Last week, a federal appeals court ruled the records must be turned over. Regina Garcia Cano, Twin Cities, "Elijah Cummings, powerful congressman leading Trump probe, has died," 17 Oct. 2019 Last week, a federal appeals court ruled the records must be turned over. Regina Garcia Cano, The Denver Post, "Elijah E. Cummings, civil rights champion and Maryland congressman, has died at 68," 17 Oct. 2019 Last week, a federal appeals court ruled the records must be turned over. Brian White, Anchorage Daily News, "Powerful Democratic Congressman Elijah Cummings has died," 17 Oct. 2019

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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Statistics for turnover

Last Updated

5 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for turnover

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

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More Definitions for turnover


How to pronounce turn over (audio)

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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More from Merriam-Webster on turnover

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with turnover

Spanish Central: Translation of turnover

Nglish: Translation of turnover for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of turnover for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about turnover

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