Meaning of “softening” in the English Dictionary

"softening" in Business English

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softeningadjective [ before noun ]

uk /ˈsɒfənɪŋ/ us

FINANCE, STOCK MARKET that has stopped increasing or that is falling:

A softening job market eventually will mean slower wage growth.
The state's unemployment rate has remained remarkably stable at very low rates despite a softening national economy.

softeningnoun [ S ]

uk /ˈsɒfənɪŋ/ us

FINANCE, STOCK MARKET a lack of increase or a reduction in the level of something:

a softening in sth A softening in oil prices has helped alleviate some of the damage.
He sees a softening in demand from the current boom's nouveaux riches, whose high-tech wealth is waning.
a softening of sth (against sth) The NIKKEI advanced, with blue-chip exporters bounding higher on a softening of the yen against the dollar.

a reduction in how severe or unpleasant something is:

a softening of sth The minister for immigration recently announced a softening of policy.
The general softening of society's attitude towards the consumption of certain illegal drugs has raised concerns over the impact of drugs at work.

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