› FINANCE, COMMERCE if trading, etc. is thin, not many people are buying or selling shares, etc.: Investor perceptions may decrease the value of high-risk bonds, especially in a thin market. In another day of thin trading, the FTSE 100 rose 21 to 5269.5.
› having only a small number of people or a small amount of something, especially money: Wages are lower in the area, and union membership is thin. Turnover was extremely thin. a thin budget
a thin margin/profit margin › COMMERCE a situation in which there is only a small difference between the total cost of making and selling something and the price it is sold for, or between the total amount of money a company receives from sales and the total cost of producing all its products and services: Cost is an issue in a business that operates on thin margins.
be stretched thin › to not have enough money, people, supplies, etc. to operate, do a job, or provide what is needed: Without more money, the programs would be stretched thin. In the current economic climate, doctors and nurses are stretched thin and equipment is lacking in many of the clinics.
the thin end of the wedge UK › something that is not very harmful in itself but that will be the start of a harmful development: The introduction of a fee for the service has been described as "the thin end of the wedge" by union leaders.
thin on the ground UK › existing only in small numbers or amounts: Good strategic leaders are very thin on the ground in UK companies.