Meaning of “equivalent” in the English Dictionary

"equivalent" in British English

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equivalentadjective

uk /ɪˈkwɪv.əl.ənt/ us /ɪˈkwɪv.əl.ənt/

C1 having the same amount, value, purpose, qualities, etc.:

She's doing the equivalent job in the new company but for more money.
Is $50 equivalent to about £30?

More examples

  • An imperial gallon is equivalent to 4546 cubic centimetres.
  • This bag holds an equivalent amount, although the shape makes it look smaller.
  • It's important to stress that this qualification is not equivalent to a degree.
  • Surely men and women doing equivalent jobs should be paid the same amount?
  • I think that covering up the facts is equivalent to lying really.

equivalentnoun [ C usually singular ]

uk /ɪˈkwɪv.əl.ənt/ us /ɪˈkwɪv.əl.ənt/

C1 something that has the same amount, value, purpose, qualities, etc. as something else:

There is no English equivalent for "bon appetit" so we have adopted the French expression.
Ten thousand people a year die of the disease - that's the equivalent of the population of this town.

More examples

  • I couldn't get any cream cheese so I bought the nearest equivalent that I could find.
  • The medical fluid may have been infected with the human equivalent of the disease.
  • This is the electoral equivalent of bribery.
  • He runs the equivalent of three marathons a week.
  • Their production of oil and gas was the equivalent of 909,000 barrels a day last year.
equivalence
noun [ U ] uk /ɪˈkwɪv.əl.əns/ us /ɪˈkwɪv.əl.əns/ also equivalency, uk /-əns.i/ us formal

There's a general equivalence between the two concepts.

(Definition of “equivalent” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"equivalent" in American English

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equivalentadjective

us /ɪˈkwɪv·ə·lənt/

equal to or having the same effect as something else:

A mile is equivalent to about 1.6 kilometers.
equivalent equations mathematics

Equivalent equations are two equations (= mathematical statements) that have the same solutions.

equivalent
noun [ C ] us /ɪˈkwɪv·ə·lənt/

A day on the planet Mercury is the equivalent of 176 days on Earth.

(Definition of “equivalent” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"equivalent" in Business English

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equivalentadjective

uk /ɪˈkwɪvələnt/ us

the same in amount, price, size, etc.:

The total consumer electronics market is equivalent to approximately $100 for every person on Earth.
equivalent amount/level/price Under the new scheme, companies would agree to pay the pension contributions of their employees, and in return workers would sacrifice an equivalent amount from their salary.

equivalentnoun [ C, usually singular ]

uk /ɪˈkwɪvələnt/ us

something that is the same amount, price, size, etc. as something else or has the same purpose as something else:

The FSA has spoken to its New York equivalent, the SEC, regarding the takeover.
The price of a barrel of crude oil in the early 1980s went as high as $40 (the equivalent of $80 today).
equivalence
noun [ U ] /ɪˈkwɪvələns/ formal

The plan requires national systems to achieve equivalence to World Bank standards.

(Definition of “equivalent” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)