Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

  

English definition of “loss”

loss

noun     /lɒs/
[C or U] a situation in which you no longer have something or have less of something, or the process that causes this: The loss of jobs in the convenience food industry seems inevitable .loss of earnings/income/pay She received compensation for loss of earnings through the illness .a loss in sth The new road will cause losses in economic value to many local properties .
[C] FINANCE, COMMERCE a situation in which a business or an organization spends more money than it earns , or loses money in another way: announce/post/report a loss (of sth) The company announced a loss of €1.3m last year . a loss in revenue big / financial / heavy losses a net / operating loss a pre-tax/after-tax lossincur/make/realize a loss In a bid to attract customers , some insurers may even be making a loss on contracts marketed to certain key buyers . a loss on an investment /a sale
[C] STOCK MARKET a situation in which the value of shares goes down: a loss in sth Gains in oil and gas were partly offset by losses in consumer products and precious metals .
[U] INSURANCE a situation in which property is damaged , lost , or stolen , and an insurance company must pay to replace it: We will cover your house contents against accidental loss or damage during the removal .
[C] a disadvantage caused by someone leaving an organization : be a loss to sb/sth It would be a great loss to the department if you left .
loss of face a situation in which someone loses the respect of other people because of something they have done: His first deal with the company had turned into a very public loss of face . → See also lose
operate, run, etc. at a loss FINANCE, COMMERCE to fail to make a profit in a business : Of the 235 large industrial projects , 46 are running at a loss. → Compare gain noun, profit noun → See also actual loss, all-loss, annual loss, capital loss, credit loss, exceptional loss, first-half loss, full-year loss, gross loss, job loss, loan loss, net loss, one-time loss, operating loss, paper loss, passive loss, quarterly loss, tax loss, trading loss, underwriting loss
(Definition of loss noun from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of loss

Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Advantage and disadvantage, but you might be interested in these topics from the Chance and possibility topic area:

Definitions of “loss” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

familiarity

a good knowledge of something, or the fact that you know it so well

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More