Definition of “understate” - English Dictionary

“understate” in British English

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understateverb [ T ]

uk /ˌʌn.dəˈsteɪt/ us /ˌʌn.dɚˈsteɪt/

to describe something in a way that makes it seem less important, serious, bad, etc. than it really is:

She believes the research understates the amount of discrimination women suffer.

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

“understate” in American English

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understateverb [ T ]

us /ˌʌn·dərˈsteɪt/

to say that the amount or importance of something is less than it really is:

The company was accused of understating potential side effects of the drug.
understatement
noun [ C/U ] us /ˌʌn·dərˈsteɪt·mənt/

[ C ] To say I was confused is an understatement – I hadn’t the slightest idea what to do.

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

“understate” in Business English

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understateverb [ T ]

uk /ˌʌndəˈsteɪt/ us ACCOUNTING

to give an amount as less than it really is:

The company's conservative accounting methods mean that results are actually understated.
understate costs/profits

to make something seem less serious or important than it really is:

Official figures hugely understate a growing problem.

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