volatile Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo
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Meaning of “volatile” in the English Dictionary

"volatile" in British English

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volatileadjective

uk   /ˈvɒl.ə.taɪl/  us   /ˈvɑː.lə.t̬əl/
likely to change suddenly and unexpectedly or suddenly become violent or angry: Food and fuel prices are very volatile in a war situation. The situation was made more volatile by the fact that people had been drinking a lot of alcohol. He had a volatile temper and couldn't have been easy to live with.
A volatile liquid or solid substance will change easily into a gas.
volatility
noun [U] uk   /ˌvɒl.əˈtɪl.ə.ti/  us   /ˌvɑː.ləˈtɪl.ə.t̬i/
(Definition of volatile from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"volatile" in American English

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volatileadjective

 us   /ˈvɑl·ə·t̬əl/
likely to change suddenly and unexpectedly, or suddenly violent or angry: It was a volatile situation, and the police handled it well. The stock market was highly volatile in the early part of the year.
chemistry If a substance, esp. a liquid, is volatile, it will change easily into a gas: volatile chemicals
volatility
noun [U]  us   /ˌvɑl·əˈtɪl·ɪ·t̬i/
Volatility in wheat on Wednesday resulted in a single-day trading record in Kansas City.
(Definition of volatile from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"volatile" in Business English

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volatileadjective

uk   /ˈvɒlətaɪl/  us   /ˈvɑːlətəl/
likely to change often or suddenly and unexpectedly: American technology shares remain volatile. a volatile fund/investment/market Property has always been less volatile than shares or gilts.
volatility
noun [U]
Some investors are nervous about market volatility.
(Definition of volatile from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“volatile” in British English

“volatile” in American English

“volatile” in Business English

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