un·​der·​per·​form | \ ˌən-dər-pər-ˈfȯrm How to pronounce underperform (audio) , -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 How to pronounce underperformance (audio) , -​pə-​ˈfȯr-​ \ noun
underperformer noun

Examples of underperform in a Sentence

The report shows which schools are underperforming.

Recent Examples on the Web

Supporters of the more expensive bill say that Baker’s proposal isn’t generous enough and also includes strings, such as giving the state education commissioner additional authority to intervene in underperforming schools. James Vaznis, BostonGlobe.com, "Education advocates see progress on Beacon Hill," 22 July 2019 Those scenarios can range from motivating an underperforming employee to resolving a conflict with a difficult customer. Peter Holley, Washington Post, "Walmart has added virtual reality to its assessment of an employee’s potential," 12 July 2019 So, too, could right-hander Riley Pint, an underperforming former first-round draft pick, or any number of Colorado’s exciting up-and-coming relievers such as right-handed sidearmer Justin Lawrence. Kyle Newman, The Denver Post, "Newman vs. Kiz: How much would it cost the Rockies to trade for Marcus Stroman?," 3 June 2019 The organization did not list an official reason for Hayes’ departure, but the club has underperformed from a win-loss standpoint relative to internal expectations entering the season. Kerry Crowley, The Mercury News, "San Jose Giants manager Bill Hayes resigned on Saturday," 17 July 2019 The largest share of voters said Ms. Harris had done so, and the largest share said Mr. Biden had underperformed. Matt Stevens, New York Times, "Kamala Harris Surges in 3 Polls After Strong Debate Performance," 2 July 2019 The total domestic box office is still lagging behind 2018’s record pace as summer sequels have generally underperformed analysts’ estimates. Ryan Faughnder, latimes.com, "‘Annabelle’ sequel is probably no match for ‘Toy Story 4’ at the box office," 26 June 2019 The studio this year has continued the turnaround of its DC Comics films with Shazam! though its big summer movie, Godzilla: King of Monsters, has underperformed. Jake Coyle, Fortune, "WarnerMedia Chief Makes a Surprise Hire for Warner Bros. CEO: a Television Executive," 24 June 2019 The last major company that went public this way — Spotify — has underperformed so far as a public company. Paul R. La Monica, CNN, "Slack's stock will soon start trading. Here's what you need to know about the non-IPO," 19 June 2019

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

16 Aug 2019

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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

Comments on underperform

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of or relating to the heavens

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