un·der·per·form | \ ˌən-dər-pər-ˈfȯrm , -pə-ˈfȯrm \
underperformed; underperforming; underperforms

Definition of underperform 

transitive verb

: to do worse than

intransitive verb

: to fail to do as well as expected

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Other words from underperform

underperformance \ˌən-dər-pər-ˈfȯr-mən(t)s, -pə-ˈfȯr- \ noun
underperformer noun

Examples of underperform in a Sentence

The report shows which schools are underperforming.

Recent Examples on the Web

Here are some reasonable reasons to leave an adviser: Consistently underperforming the market, in spite of taking similar risks to the market. Peter Dunn, Indianapolis Star, "Pete the Planner: Breaking up with a financial adviser doesn't need to be painful," 11 July 2018 But underperforming ridership numbers aren't anything new for WES. Andrew Theen, OregonLive.com, "WES train ridership down 13 percent from 2017, but TriMet rolls on," 10 May 2018 Even with low expectations, two other films opening over the weekend underperformed. Deborah Vankin, latimes.com, "How massive is 'Black Panther' at the box office? A record-shattering $235 million," 19 Feb. 2018 For now, this is a team that’s seriously underperforming. John Shea, SFChronicle.com, "Dusty Baker’s long gone as Nationals, Bryce Harper struggle," 7 July 2018 The standalone film Solo: A Star Wars Story vastly underperformed other entries in the series, which reportedly caused Lucasfilm to halt development of the other standalone movies on its slate. Bryan Bishop, The Verge, "Star Wars: Episode IX reportedly casts Keri Russell in an ‘action-heavy’ role," 6 July 2018 Complete the sentence: Woke up like this: Disheveled, running late, doing too many things at once and underperforming all of them; but pretty thrilled about mediocrity! Heran Mamo, Billboard, "Every Photo Justin Timberlake & Jessica Biel Have Shared of Son Silas," 6 July 2018 The third yardstick is whether American firms underperform other multinationals and local firms. The Economist, "America Inc and the rage against Beijing," 28 June 2018 Authorities have been struggling to address allegations raised by underperforming parties that the May vote was marred by fraud. Philip Issa, BostonGlobe.com, "Iraqi court endorses manual recount for May election," 22 June 2018

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

1971, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Statistics for underperform

Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

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The first known use of underperform was in 1971

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More Definitions for underperform



Financial Definition of underperform

What It Is

The term underperform refers to an analyst recommendation that a stock is expected to do slightly worse than the overall market return.

How It Works

Analysts regularly evaluate and project stock performance.  Analysts may provide this service on behalf of a particular brokerage house, or for private clients, or even for public dissemination through reports and investment publications.    Analysts will evaluate the financial conditions of an underlying security and any competitive information available about the industry.  Based on this analysis, a stock may be described along a range from the lowest rating, "strong sell," (i.e. not expected to perform well or recover) to the highest rating, "strong buy" (i.e. big performance gains expected).  Analysts generally use the term "underperform" to refer to a stock that is fundamentally stable, but expected to perform below the market or industry sector to which the stock belongs.   The category “underperform” is alternatively referred to as "moderate sell" or "weak hold."

Why It Matters

Investors can gather valuable information from analysts' recommendations about particular stocks.  Not all analysts' recommendations are consistent or based on the same measures of a company's activities or expected performance.  Understanding and weighing varying recommendations is an important part of an investor's work.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of underperform

: to be less successful than expected or required

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