Glossary for Business and Economics Created by Students
Glossary for Business and Economics
Word Meaning Example Extra Info.
absorb  take in, soak up  The economy needs to grow 5 to 8per year just to absorb the growing number of job seekers.   absorbent, absorbing 
accelerate  to go faster  The price of consumer goods in China is sure to accelerate.  acceleration 
acceleration  to go faster, speed up  The price of consumer goods in China is sure to accelerate.  acceleration 
accreditation  proof of reaching a required standard  Avoid universities and colleges that have no accepted accreditation.  accredit (v), accredited (adj) 
accredited  officially recognised, certified  According to the new rules, only accredited investment consultants and stock analysts are licensed to provide market analysis and sharerecommendations.  accredited consultants, accredited agents 
ailing  weakening  Indonesia's ailing economy has shown no signs of real recovery since the 1997/98 Asian financial crisis.  ail (v), ailment (n) 
alleged  to declare without being able to prove  The Commission was asked to investigate the alleged cases of unfair business practice.  allege (v), allegedly alleged fraud 
alleviate  to lessen the pain, make lighter  Restructuring debt is one way to alleviate the financial problems of developing countries  alleviation (n) 
analysts  a person who examines figures carefully  Financial analysts believe that Taiwan's economy will perform well. this year.   
antitrust  promoting competition by opposing monopolies and cartels   She alleged that Hong Kong was controlled by a system of monopolies and cartels and it needed new antitrust legislation.   antitrust laws, antitrust policies, antitrust suits 
arbitrage  simultaneous buying and selling of identical securities or commodities in two markets in order to benefit from the price difference   Arbitrage is a fast-moving business. The arbitrageur has to act swiftly if he or she is to profit from the slight price differences.   arbitrageur (n) interest arbitrage 
assert  state strongly  The Chinese leaders effectively assert their control over the Hongkong Government.   
assets  property, particularly property that can be sold to cover liabilities   I can't pay my debts because I have no savings or assets.    
auditing  inspection of accounts by qualified accountant  There was nothing to fear in the annual audit because the accounts were all in order, the company secretary said.  auditing, auditor 
auditor  person who examines accounts  The auditors will report the profits and losses of the company at the next Annual General Meeting.   
autonomy  self-government or right to self-government   "One country, two systems" was supposed to guarantee Hong Kong's autonomy.   autonomous (adj), autonomies (pl) a high degree of autonomy 
bankruptcy  state of being unable to pay one's debts, insolvent; legal process where bankrupt's property is fairly divided between creditors   He said there had been some damaging speculation but the company did not plan to file for bankruptcy.   bankrupt (n), bankrupt (v)  
barriers  obstruction  There are still enough trade barriers to make the free market economy a fiction.  legal barriers, trade barriers, financial barriers, tariff barriers 
battered  hit or beaten  There is little relief in sight for Hong Kong's battered economy.  batter (v) 
bearish  In a bear market prices fall sharply. A stockbroker is bearish if he expects the market to fall.  There was bearish sentiment last year as stock prices fell.  Opposite - bullish 
benchmark  standard for measurement  The benchmark Hang Seng index was up 2%.  bennchamrk rate, benchmark consumer price index, benchmark index rate 
bet  to gamble or the act of gambling  Even after the dotcom bubble showed signs of bursting, investors continued to bet on the new industry.  betting (v) 
bid  verb - offer a price for something noun - price offered , an attempt, effort  What would you bid for this antique vase? Prisoner saved in suicide bid. The contract was awarded to the lowest bidder.  bidder 
bonus  extra payment, dividend  Staff were told there would be no year-end bonus because profits were down.   
boom  time of fast growth; deep, resounding noise   Experts say that there is unlikely to be another economic boom for many years.   boom (v)  
boosting  increasing  New technology was introduced with the aim of boosting production.  boost (n) 
bourse  stock exchange  Nervousness about the US dollar was reflected in trading on the local bourse.   
broker  stockbroker; agent who buys, sells etc.  The broker said that share prices had tumbled unexpectedly at the end of the day.  brokerage 
budget  spending plan; sum allocated for a particular project; detailed summary of expected income and expenditure over a given period   My budget this year will not stretch to an expensive holiday.   budget (v)  
bull  expecting prices to rise  Investors felt bullish about the market on news that the banks had made a large profit.  bullish, a bull market 
bullish  believing the market will go up; optimistic; positive  Investors felt bullish about the market on news that the banks had made a large profit.  bull, a bull market 
bureaucratic  strictly following rules, used to describe an inflexible official who will not deviate from the administrative process   Governments which are rigidly bureaucratic tend to resist change.   bureaucracy (n), bureaucratically (adv), bureaucratise (v), bureaucratisation (n)  
campaign  series of planned activities   The television advertising campaign boosted sales.   campaign (v), campaigner (n)  
capitalism  free enterprise, system of private capital and ownership of the means of production.  Capitalism is supposed to be the hallmark of the Hong Kong economy.  capitalist (n) 
cartels  group of businesses which regulates production, pricing and the selling of goods thus limiting competion   The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is often cited as one of the best-known cartels.   form a cartel, establish a cartel, cartel price agreement  
cash  coins and banknotes   I prefer to pay for everything with cash and rarely use my credit card   cash (v), cash flow (n), cashier (n)  
circulation  movement of information (news, books) or currency   Inflation is the result of too much currency in circulation combined with a limited number goods on sale.   circulate (v), circulatory (adj), circulating (adj)  
clients  customers  The fund manager aims to protect his client's investments.   
collaboration  cooperation, working together  Collaboration between the mainland and China has increased since the change in sovereignty.  collaborate (v) 
collusion  secret agreement with illegal purpose   The football referee was working in collusion with the winning team.   collude (v), colluder (n), collusive (adj)  
commission  1. Person or group of people appointed with certain powers2. amount of money paid to the seller related to the value of goods sold.  1. The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) is an important financial organisation.2. He earnes 10 commission on every property sold.  Commissioner, High Commissioner, Banking Commissioner, Law Reform Commission 
competitive  successful against business rivals; always eager to compete   It will be hard to make a success of your new venture in this tough, competitive climate.   compete (v), competition (n), competitor (n) competitive markets, competitve prices, competitive industries 
compliance  obeying a rule or law  Urgent action is needed by market regulators and international trade organisations to promotecompliance with a global framework.  enforce compliance, promote compliance, ensure compliance 
concessions  a right given by the government, a point given in an argument  The industrial dispute looked set to continue because both sides refused to make any concessions.  concede (v), concessionary (adj) 
conducive  tending or leading to   The budget deficit in the Philippines is not conducive to investment.   conduce (v)  
conglomerates  large organisation made up of several businesses  The Hong Kong based conglomerate, Hutchison-Whampoa, has just announced a joint venture with a Shanghai telephone company.   
conservative  safe, cautious  Conservative investors will not put all their money into one company.  conserve, conservation 
consolidate  to make stronger, larger   A large population movement from the countryside to the cities and towns will consolidate markets in urban areas.  consolidation, consolidated enterprises 
consumer  end-user  A US economic recovery will help stimulate consumer spending in Hong Kong.  consumer confidence, consumer price index, consumer credit 
consumers  end-users  Consumers rarely know or care about the race, sex or national origin of the producers; our concern is whether it's a good pair of jeans for the money.  consumer confidence, consumer price index, consumer credit 
contractual  backed by a contract   I will sue your company if it fails to meet its contractual obligations.   contract (n), contract (v)  
corporate  shared by members of a group  Government and corporate bonds are bought and sold every day.

With the pressure on corporate earnings forcinglocal firms to cut investment and lay off workers, Hong Kong'slong-running deflation is expected to accelerate in the next few months. 

corporate bonds, corporate stocks, corporate governance, corporate managers 
correlate  have a parallel relationship, related by cause and effect   He never could correlate his spending with his income.   correlation (n), correlative (adj) positively correlated, negatively correlated, perfect correlation 
corruption  dishonest, unlawful behaviour often involving bribery  The Independent Commission Against Corruption was set up in 1974.  corrupt (adj), corruptly (adv), corruptible (adj) 
counteract  act against  Financial growth should be adjusted to counteract fluctuations in business activity.   
counterfeiting  forging, copying designs and goods illegally  International companies have formed their own group to fight counterfeiting in China.  counterfeit (adj), counterfeit (v), counterfeiter (n) 
crackdown  forceful measures taken against something  Beijing started a major crackdown on the Falun Gong after a big demonstration by the movement.  to crack down (v) 
credibility  power to inspire trust or belief  The Enron scandal has damaged the credibility of giant corporations.  credible (adv), credibleness (n) 
crisis  emergency  Since the Asian financial crisis, the government has spent more money on education.  critical, critically 
crisis.  emergency  Since the Asian financial crisis, the government has spent more money on education.  critical, critically 
dampen  to weaken; to lower; to make slightly wet  He said rising unemployment would hit consumer confidence and dampen consumption.  damp, dampen prices 
debentures  A certificate or voucher acknowledging a debt.   Whenever a public company invites the public to subscribe for shares or debentures, it must issue a prospectus.    
defaulting  failing to pay   U.S. government is less likely to default on its debts than any private corporation.   default (v) and (n) default on a loan, default on a debt 
deficits  shortage, business loss, excess of expenditure over income  One of the Government's solutions to the budget deficit was to cut civil servants' pay.  deficient (adj) 
deflationary  decreasing in value - opposite of inflationary  The economy has emerged from a deflationary trough, but prices remain weak.  deflationary trough, deflationary pressure 
deposits  sums of money paid into an account  Keep 90 percent of your savings in fixed deposits and the rest in direct equities.  deposit, depositor (n)to deposit (v) 
depreciation  decrease in value of a currency; decrease in value of an asset through use etc   This computer is still working but its depreciation on the open market makes it worthless in accounting terms.   depreciate (v), depreciatingly (adv), depreciatory (adj)  
derivatives  something derived from another; a financial instrument whose value is based on another security  The problem in the derivatives markets is due to the long time delay before settlement.  They invented a derivative linked to the electricty sector to help BA to offset the cost of the bid.  
deterioration  get worse, depreciate   The job situation in Hong Kong is set to deteriorate even further.   deteriorate, deteriorating, deterioration 
devaluation  lower value, particularly a currency  After it decided to devalue the peso, the Argentine government had to limit withdrawals from banks.  devalue 
devalue  lower value, particularly a currency  After it decided to devalue the peso, the Argentine government had to limit withdrawals from banks.  devaluation 
diligent  hard working  The diligent student excelled in her exams.  diligance (n) 
disaster  terrible event  After the World Trade Centre disaster, global markets fell sharply.  disastrous 
disclosure  something that is revealed, uncovered or made known  The president was heavily criticised for his limited disclosure of his personal financial interests.  disclose (v) 
discounts  interest taken off before buying, selling or lending a commercial paper like a bill of exchange; reduction from the full or usual amount   Shoppers queued for hours outside the store which was offering goods with a discount of up to 50 per cent.   discount (v), discount market (n)  
discrepancy  difference, failure to match sums  There appears to be a discrepancy in the figures provided by the two researchers.   
discriminatory  biased or prejudiced; capable of showing discrimination or fine judgement   Most discriminatory behaviour is against the law in Hong Kong although there is no legislation against racism.   discrimination (n), discriminate (v), discriminately (adv), discriminating (adj)  
disputes  argument, disagreement  Cathay Pacific has been involved in a long and damaging dispute with its pilots.  dispute (v), disputer (n), disputation (n), disputant (n), disputatious (adj) 
dissipate  scatter, spread or disperse; spend or waste indiscriminately;  I tried to dissipate her fears about buying Bank of China shares.  dissipated (adj), dissipation (n) 
divert  deflect, move or turn something aside   We will have to divert some money into promoting the company through advertisements.   diverting (adj), divertingly (adv)  
dividend  share of profits paid to investors  I have received my first dividend on my shares in HSBC.   
downturn  decrease  Many economists believe that Hong Kong's economy will recover from the current downturn when it relies less on the property market.   
drastic  strong, serious   There have been drastic changes in the quality of certain electronic goods in recent years.    
durable  lasting   The price of durable goods, particularly electrical goods like washing machines and music systems, dropped dramatically during the last quarter.   durability (n), durably (adv)  
earners  people who work to make money   Low income earners can fall into a cycle of debt during an economic downturn.   earn (v), earnings (n)  
ease  absence of difficulty (n) to lessen, lower (v)  These pills will ease the pain. US interest rates have been falling this year, and are expected to ease further.   with ease, easily 
economic  related to the economy of a country  The economic situation in Japan is slowly improving.  economy, economist, economical, economize, economically 
economise  cut or limit spending   You could economise on your electricity bill if you turned down the air conditioning.   economy (n), economist (n), economic (adj), economics (n)  
embargo  official order forbidding trade  The US is to maintain its trade embargo with Cuba.  embargoes, embagoing, embargoedoil embargo, trade embargo 
endowments  funds given to an individual or institution like a university for a particular purpose; natural talent or gift   They agreed to take out endowment insurance which would at least mean some guaranteed money when the policy matured.   endow (v)  
enduring  experiencing, lasting, continuing, surviving  Their government wants continuing economic growth while still enduring political control.   endure, endurance 
enforce  ensure that a rule or law is followed  For some workers, wages are low, hours are long, and overtime is often enforced and paid below the legal rate.  law enforcement (n), enforceable, unenforceable (adj) 
engaged  involve, take part; to engage or get the services of   You will have to find suitable premises if you want to engage in the retail trade.   engagement (n)  
ensure  make something sure to happen  The government must ensure that press freedom is maintained.   
enterprises  businesses, particularly those that involve some risk   Managing rather than owning small enterprises, like single restaurants, can be a thankless and poorly paid task.  enterpriser (n), enterprising (adj)  
entrenched  fixed as in dug in to a fixed position, immovable or established.  There is no point in arguing with her because her views are so entrenched.  entrench (v), entrenchment (n) 
entrepot  trading centre  Hong Kong is a busy entrepot in South East Asia.   
entrepreneurs  someone who operates and takes on the risk of a business in the pursuit of profit  Budding entrepreneurs will find it hard to attract investment in the current economic climate.  entrepreneurial (adj), entrepreneurship (n) 
equity  value of a business or property beyond liabilities like debts; ownership interest in a company in the form of stock; fairness, legal system based on fairness   The group's debt-to-equity ratio shows there would be little for creditors if it went into liquidation.   equitable (adj), equity capital (n)  
executive  person in charge of a business or government; administration  He had all the qualities and qualifications of an executive but had never been promoted.  executive (adj), executively (adv) 
executives  person in charge of a business or government; administration  He had all the qualities and qualifications of an executive but had never been promoted.  executive (adj), executively (adv) 
expand  become bigger  The company plans to expand into the China market.  expansion, expansionist 
expansionary  causing expansion or enlargement  Bejing's expansionary policy, particularly the building of roads and other infrastructure projects, was aimed at promoting growth.   expand (v), expansion (n), expanse (n) 
expenditure  spending   I outsource all the work so there is almost zero expenditure on plant and machinery.   expend (v), expendable (adj)  
exports  goods sent out of a country  The government restricts exports of cars to Japan.  to export (v), export 
fake  false, copied  Many fake watches can be bought illegally in Shenzhen.  fake (v) 
financial  related to money  The financial situation will improve in the third quarter of this year.  finance, financier, financially 
fiscal  financial; to do with government finance  GDP fell during the last fiscal year.  fiscally (adv) 
flagship  chief or most representative product or business in a group or country; ship carrying commander of a fleet  Cathay Pacific could lose its standing as the flagship airline of Hong Kong.  flagship carrier, flagship airline, flagship property 
fluctuations  change  Following the terrorist attack, there were major fluctuations in the exchange rate.  fluctuate 
forecast  to tell what will happen in the future, predict  Analysts have forecast a decline of 20 in the value of the company's stocks.  forecast (n), past tense forecast or forecasted 
forum  open discussion; place for open discussion  The T V station hosted a forum of international business executives.   
fraud  deception, cheating  He said he had used some creative accounting methods but the accusations of fraud were unfounded.  fraudster (n), fraudulent (adj), fraudulence (n) 
frustration  feeling of being annoyed or disappointed  Her frustration turned to anger when she realised that the company accounts had been manipulated.  frustrate (v), frustrated (adj) 
fundamentals  basic elements that indicate the health of businesses and their securities, like economic, financial and operating factors  The fundamentals of this company look good from its dividends to its record of earnings-per-share growth.  fundamental (adj), fundamentalism (n) 
global  worldwide  Global trade continues to improve with increased transportation links.  globally, globe 
gloom  hopelessness, sadness  Gloomy forecasts show that the economy is weakening.  doom and gloom, gloom, (adj) gloomy economy, gloomy prospects 
goods  portable property; merchandise   The goods at this store are poor quality.   good (adj), good (n)  
greenback  slang for a US dollar bill  The greenback spiralled down to an all-time low against the Japanese yen.   
gross  total, exclusive of deductions like tax; course, offensive; obvious   China's offical increase in gross domestic product was 7.3 per cent in 2001 but commentators questioned the calculations.   grossness (n)  
hampered  prevented progress or limited   The bank was hampered by far too many non-performing loans.  hamper (v) 
harsh  rough or severe  Small businesses that needed even short-term loans are bound to suffer in these harsh economic times.  harsh conditions 
haven  safe place, refuge  Hong Kong has served as a haven for refugees from many countries around the globe.  tax haven 
humanitarian  affecting human lives  Japan's role in the expectedwar will be limited to intelligence, transport and humanitarian support.   humanitarianism 
imminent  about to happen  An economic recovery may not be imminent.   
implemented  carried out  This year the government implemented a new policy on racial discrimination.  implementation (n), implementing, implemented  
imprudent  unwise  A prudent investor will closely research the background of a company.   
increments  increases  The salary will range from $25,000 to $48,000 with ten annual increments.  incremental, incrementally 
incurred  bring upon oneself, receive as a result of one's actions  Large state enterprises which are not economic and efficient will continue to incur huge losses.  incur a debt, incur a loss 
indebtedness  state of owing a debt   Enron's management succeeded in hiding the true picture of its indebtedness.   indebted (adj)  
indices  relative scales; benchmarks which act as measure of financial or economic health  The Hang Seng Index and the Nikkei Index are both benchmark indices. The Nikkei is an index of the 225 leading stocks traded on Tokyo Stock Exchange.  index (v), index-linked (adj) 
inefficiency  lacking in efficiency, ineffective   China's state-owned enterprises often suffered from mismanagement and inefficiency.   inefficient  
inflation  increase in price of goods and services   When the economy is healthy, there is usually moderate inflation.   inflationary (adj), inflate (v)  
influx  inward flow  There has been an influx of illegal workers from across the border.   
insolvency  state of being insolvent, bankrupt or unable to meet all debts  Rising unemployment in Hong Kong has been matched by increasing insolvency.  insolvent (adj) 
interim  temporary; for a short time   The company's interim report brought more bad news for investors.  imminent entry to the WTO  
interventionist  causing a change in events   Political changes could result in the government following an interventionist direction that could be damaging to the economy.   intervene (v) intervention (n)  
inventory  (a list of) all the goods in one place, stock  They made an inventory during the stock taking to decide on the best selling lines.   
investments  money used to buy stock, shares in a company in order to make a profit. Something that will increase in value over time.  After a long period of economic downturn, people are now finding new hope fore their investments. I bought this painting as an investment.   
investors  someone who puts money into a business or savings plan.  The investors put $20,000 into the Tracker Fund.  investment 
jitters  nervousness  He predicted that the stockmarket would be liable to the jitters following the downturn and might remain unstable for some time.  very informal - jittery (adj) 
judiciary  the judges who form the legal system of the government.  China does not have an independent judiciary because the courts are subject to political authority.  judicial (adj) 
launch  start  The company announced it had postponed the launch of its share issue but would reconsider it when markets were more settled.  launch (v) 
layoffs  releasing workers from employment due to poor economic circumstances, firing of staff  Beijing is also improving its social welfare system to ease layoffs. The company laid off fifty staff last month.  to lay people off (v) 
leverage  power, influence  A high degree of leverage can generate substantial profits. The leverage ratio was 8.5%. The futures market provides a way for investors to leverage their assets.  Can be used as a verb, noun or adjective. 
levied  demanded or collected a tax  The government has levied a $0.75 tax on petrol.  levy (v) and (n) 
levy  tax, tariff   Imposing a sales levy would be unfair during a time of high unemployment.   levying, levied (v)  
liability  disadvantage or handicap. liabilities - debts, obligation  The driver denied any liability for the accident. The government is concerned that the contingency fund might become a liabilty. Careful investing can reduce tax liability.  liability for something 
liquidity  state of having assets that are easily converted into cash  American airlines, which have suffered hefty losses, are trying to improve their liquidity by applying for government loan guarantees.  liquid (n), liquidate (v), liquidation (n) liquidity problems, liquidity position  
lobbying  aiming to persuade (a legislator) to support a cause  The President was lobbying Security Council members for their support in an attack on Iraq.  to lobby (v) 
logistics  provision and management of services, equipment an materials on a large scale  Airport officials are keen to make the facility the logistics hub of the region.  logistical (adj) 
looming  threatening, or coming threateningly close  In retrospect, analysts admitted they should have seen the financial crisis looming.  loom (v) looming disaster 
lottery  lucky draw to raise money - like the Mark Six in Hong Kong  What would you do if you won a million dollars in the lottery?  state lottery, win a lottery, draw a lottery 
lucrative  profitable, money making  The Tracker Fund has yet to prove very lucrative for investors.  lucratively (adv), lucrativeness (n) lucrative investment, luctrative route, lucrative market sector 
managerial  taking charge   Samsung Electronics appointed Lee Jae Yong, a 34-year-old graduate student with no managerial experience, as a vice president in its corporate strategy office.  manage (v), management (n) manager (n) 
marketplace  commercial world of buying and selling; open space for a market  Hong Kong prides itself on offering a competitive marketplace; once it offered manufactured goods and now it offers financial services.  market (n), marketable (adj), marketer (n), market value (n), market research (n) 
massive  big, heavy, impressive  PCCW suffered massive losses back in 2000 and had to search for ways to cut debt.  massively (adv), massiveness (n) 
mediocre  ordinary, average   There is less than a mediocre chance of getting a return on your investment.   mediocrity (n) mediocre results 
merchandise  goods bought and sold, buying and selling goods  The trader insisted that the merchandise was poor quality.   merchandise (v), merchandising (n) 
merger  joining of companies where a new company takes over all net assets   Share prices rose on news of the merger between the two media companies.   merge (v)  
merit  value, worth, good quality   There is no merit in refusing to negotiate with the union.  merited (v), meritless (n), meritocracy (n), meritorious (adj)  
middlemen  intermediary; trader who buys from producers to sell to retailers or consumers   The farmers complained that middlemen were paying too little for their produce.    
mitigate  moderate, make less severe or milder   Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing tried to mitigate the effect of the proposal to delist 'penny stocks' by suspending the recommendation.   mitigation (n), mitigator (n)  
momentum  motion, movement, impetus  Year-on-year export figures for the last quarter were poor and they still show no signs of gathering momentum.   
monetary  involving money  It is illegal to make monetary payments to immigration officers to gain entry to this country.  monetary policy 
monopolise  form a monopoly, control or dominated a market, commodity etc, excluding all others   That supermarket chain is attempting to monopolise the fresh produce market by undercutting prices.   monopoly (n), monopolisation (n)  
monopolising  forming a control of a market, excluding all others   That supermarket chain is attempting to monopolise the fresh produce market by undercutting prices.   monopoly (n), monopolisation (n)  
multinational  of many countries  Many multinational countries have their Asian headquarters in Hong Kong.   
negligible  unimportant, not worth taking into account   The difference in the price of petrol at different garages is negligible   neglibily (adv)  
nervous  unease  She felt nervous before taking her exams.  nervousness (n), nervously (adj) 
nonperforming  not producing an income  The bank's assets consisted of mainly nonperfoming loans which threatened to become a crippling burden.  perform (v) 
obligation  duty   The government has a moral obligation to provide shelter for its citizens.   oblige (v)  
obscure  vague, hidden, unimportant; make something vague or cover it up  The company was so obscure that noone at the meeting had heard of it. Don't obscure the view.  obscurely (adv), obscureness (n), obscurity (n) 
offshore  located in a foreign country and not subject to tax laws.   Offshore oil prices remained high due to the uncertainties of a war in the Gulf.    
optimistic  confident or hopeful of the best possible outcome, opposite of pessimistic  Beijing's optimistic growth forecast was justified by the latest GDP figures.  optimism (n), optimistically (adv), optimist (n) 
outperforming  performing better than rival  Technology stocks have been outperforming others during the last two days trading.   
overwhelming  very great   The party won an overwhelming majority in the elections.   overwhelm (v) to completely overcome  
panic  sudden fear   The Stock Exchange suspended trading to prevent panic selling.    
peaks  pointed top or edge; highest point  Property prices reached their peak on the eve of the Asian financial crisis.  peak (v), peaked (adj) 
pecuniary  of or about money   More people are working longer hours without any pecuniary gain.   pecuniarly (adv)  
peg  to fix price, commodity etc at a certain level; join, link, pin used to fix something as in tent peg or clothes peg  There has been some debate about whether Hong Kong should continue to peg its currency against the US dollar.  pegged (v), depeg, unpeg 
pessimistic  looking on the bad side of a situation  Pessimistic bankers believe that the economy will worsen this year.  pessimist 
plummet  dive, fall sharply   Share prices continued to plummet as more corporate accounting scandals were revealed.    
portfolio  individual's or company's investments; role and responsibilties of government department or minister  His portfolio indicated a conservative approach to investment with the emphasis on long-term owership.  porfolio management (n) 
pragmatic  practical rather than theoretical  Sacking 100 employees was the only pragmatic way to cut costs and keep the company in business.  pragmatically (adv), pragmatism (n) 
predatory  robbing, exploiting or destroying others for gain, preying on others   Predatory pricing by an unofficial cartel of retailers forced the chain of shops out of business.

The eagle is a predatory creature.  

predatorily (adv), predator (n), predatoriness (n) predatory pricing, predatory practices  
pressure  putting force on something  The FX market became very volatile and the Hong Kong dollar was under considerable downward pressure  upward pressure, downward pressure, pressure groups 
prevailing  predominant, widespread; generally accepted  New ventures are unlikely to attract substantial funding in the prevailing economic climate.  prevail (v), prevailingly (adv) prevailing interest rates, prevailing view  
preventing  stopping  The police are preventing the public from going into the building.  prevent (v) prevention (n) 
profit  making a profit   The profitability of the company suffered last year and we expect to make only modest gains this year.  profit (n), profit (v), profitable (adj), profitably (adv)  
profitable  money making  Cathay Pacific is one of Asia's most profitable airlines.  profit (n) and (v), profitability (n)profitable investment, profitable company 
prohibited  forbidden, not allowed, prevented  The carrying of guns, knives and dangerous substances is prohibited on aircraft.  prohibition (n) prohibit (v) 
promotional  helping to publicise and increase sales   The new CEO of the company aims to improve their promotional materials and activities.   promote (v)  
propaganda  information spread, by a government or movement to promote a cause   Beijing has intensified its propaganda against the Uighur people under the guise of preventing terrorism.  propagandism (n), propagandist (n), propagandise (v), propagate (v) 
prosperity  wealth  The country enjoyed prosperity / prosperous growth.   prosperous (adj) 
provincial  from outside the capital city   The provincial capital of Guandong, Guanzhou, has close communication links with Shenzhen.    
quadruple  multiply four times  Demand is expected tomore than quadruple by 2010 as the country tries to boost its use of gas.  See also double, triple 
rally  to revive or recover; to rally, or bring people together for a purpose; a meeting involving a common purpose  Share prices were expected to rally after Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan gave a positive report to the Senate.  rallied, rallying (v) 
ratings  estimates of financial or credit standing; rankings according to a scale  Companies like Moody's and Standard and Poor's provide credit rating services.   rate (n), rate (v) 
ration  restrict consumption of something; set allowance of food etc   You will have to ration your spending money until you find a job.    
rebound  bounce back, recover; act of bouncing back, recovery  The combination of falling property prices and rising unemployment are big obstacles and Hong Kong is unlikely to rebound in the near future.   
recession  temporay downturn in economic activity  Economists say a country is in recession when there has been a decline in the gross national product for at least two consecutive quarters.  economic recession 
reckoned  think, suppose, expect  We reckon the employment situation will improve in the third quarter of the year.   
reinvent  invent again, replace with a new version  The SAR needs to do more to reinvent itself as a logistics and financial services hub.   
resilient  able to recover quicky, bounce back  The market showed great resilience and regained the losses of the previous day.  resilient (adj) 
restrictions  limitations, controls  The City of Seattle announced emergency restrictions in water usage to avoid a water shortage.  impose restrictions on, trade restrictions,  
retail  selling to the end-user or consumer.  Negotiation over price is never seen at supermarkets or restaurants, though it is common when purchasing a car.   retailer retail costs, retail outlets, retail prices 
retailers  sellers to the end-user; not wholesalers  A farmer or manufacturer may sell his or her output to some distributor, who may in turn resell it to wholesalers, who resell it to retailers, who finally, sell it to the end-user, the consumer.  retail 
retaliation  an attack in return, revenge  The US government has concentrated its attention, and its defence budget, on retaliation and the fight against terrorism.  retaliate (v), retaliatory (adj) 
risk  chance, or risk, of a debt being unpaid; variable return on an investment; something that involves danger  Beijing has focused all its attention on the risk of slowing growth.  risk (v) 
risky  chance of a debt being unpaid; dangerous (investment)   Beijing has focused all its attention on the risk of slowing growth.  risk (v) risk (n) take a risk, risky venture 
robust  strong  By concentrating on tried and tested products, the company has remained robust even during the worst recessions.  robustly (adv) 
scant  barely enough, little   He received scant support in the new enterprise.   scant (v), scantly (adv), scanty (adj)  
sectors  section (of society, economy)  Inflation is not controlled by the private sector. Events in one sector of the economy have macroeconomic effects on other parts of the economy.  private sector, property sector 
sentiment  feeling, confidence  Coupled with falling property prices and rising unemployment, investor sentiment in Hong Kong worsened.   
shareholders  owner of shares in a company  Small shareholders should not be ignored, rather they should be encouraged to speak up at meetings, the managing director said.  share (n), share (v) 
shortcomings  failings  Our group may have its shortcomings, it may not have paid the best dividends, but it has never let down its shareholders entirely.    
slashed  cut drastically; reduced  The company attempted to become a market leader by slashing its computer prices.  slashed costs, slashed interest rates 
slowdown  process of slowing down, slowing pace  Outside forces are sustaining the slowdown and there is little the government can do to boost the economy.   
sluggish  slow, moving at below the expected rate  Construction companies have been particularly badly hit by sluggish property sales.  sluggard (n) 
slump  decline, sink  Japan, once known for its buoyant economy, has been suffering from a slump for well over a decade.  slump (v) 
soared  rose or increased sharply, flew upwards  Share prices soared on news of the group's latest acquisition.  soaring (adj) 
speculation  investment with some risk  Shanghai and Shenzhen markets remain immature and are driven by speculation and best guesses on forthcoming policy changes.  speculator 
spontaneous  resulting from natural sudden urge  Spontaneous cheering broke out as the concert ended.  spontaneously (adv), spontaneity (n) 
stake  financial interest in a business enterprise, share; at stake - at risk  The group announced it intended to acquire a 30 per cent stake in another technology company.   
stance  position, attitude, mental or physical,   Prime Minister Koizumi's tough stance on financial corruption has failed to divert attention from the scandals in his ruling party.   
stimulate  rouse or excite action  There is little the government can do to stimulate the economy in poor rural areas.  stimulating (adj), stimulant (n), stimulus (n) 
stockbrokers  person who buys and sells stocks for clients  Investors are advised to buy shares through a stockbroker.  stock (n) stock market (n) 
stockmarkets  A market for trading stocks or equities.  The international bank has announced its intention to list its shares on the Hong Kong stockmarket.   
streamlined  simplified and more efficient  Restructuring departments and cutting staff would make the bank a more streamlined operation, the spokeswoman said.   
stringent  strict, tightly controlled  It was essential to maintain stringent supervision of all nonperforming loans  stringency (n), stringently (adv) 
substantially  quite a lot, mainly, considerably  Prices are substantially lower than they were last year.  substantial 
swap  exchange  People can swap ideas and information in on-line chat rooms.   
taxable  of the money that is subject to tax   An accountant discovered that I could reduce my taxable income by deducting allowed expenses.   tax (n), tax (v), taxation (n), tax-deductible (adj), tax haven (n)  
taxation  act of levying tax or payment of tax, the money demanded by governments to increase revenue  Changes to the current system of taxation will help decrease the budget deficit.  tax (v), tax (n), taxable (adj), tax avoidance (n), tax evasion (n) 
tier  layer  Special privileges exist for top tier clients only.   
transact  do business , negotiate a deal, contract etc   Sometimes a face-to-face meeting is the only way to transact business.   transaction (n), transactor (n)  
transaction  piece of business  Individual transactions involved a relatively small amount of money.  transaction costs 
tremendous  very great  There has been a tremendous increase in proprty prices over the past six used to    
trend  direction   The current savings trend is to invest in technology.   
troughs  low point; channel or gutter  Rising unemployment, falling consumer spending and sliding property prices are bound to end in a deflationary trough.   
turmoil  great confusion, disturbance, chaos  The economic turmoil in Argentina seemed endless.  economic turmoil , financial turmoil, global turmoil 
turnover  selling rate, amount of business transacted or stock sold during a given period  The company chairman blamed poor market turnover for the low final dividend.   
undertaking  promise, agreement to do something, to make a commitment to do a job etc  You made an undertaking that you would complete the work by today.  undertake, undertook (v) 
unsecured  not guaranteed, not insured  A mortgage fully supported by property is far safer than an unsecured personal loan.  unsecured loans 
valuation  assessment of value or worth,   I think the agent's valuation of this property was far too high.  value (n), value (v), valuer (n), valued (adj), value added (n) 
venture  business involving some risk as well as possible profit; to dare to do something risky  Start-ups, or new ventures, need venture capital be it from wealthy individuals or investment banks.  venturing (v), venturer (n) joint venture, venture capital 
vested  advantageous right; to vest - to give as a legal right.  The real power is vested in the Chief Executive. He has a vested interest in having his brother appointed as the external auditor.  vested interest, vested right vested in 
viable  capable of growth, feasible  I don't think the plan to acquire more subsidiaries is viable during the current downturn.  viability (n) 
volatility  state of being changeable, given to sudden, inconsistent behaviour  Market volatility was inevitable after September 11 and the more recent accounting scandals in large corporations.  volatile (adj)  
vulnerable  subject to attack, capable of being hurt  The property sectory is particularly vulnerable during periods of deflation.  vulnerability (n), vulnerably (adv) 
wide berth.  avoid (idiom)   That company seems to be in financial trouble. I'd give it a wide berth if I were you.  to give someone or something a wide berth a berth is where a ship ties up, for example at Ocean terminal. 
windfall  unexpected luck, like a legacy or sudden financial gain; fruit blown off a tree by the wind   A surge in the number of foreign firms in the city, all needing office space and homes for staff, resulted in a windfall for property owners.   windfall profit, windfall gain 
workforce  total number of people who could be employed, as in a country's workforce, or total number workers in a company  When orders for products are so irregular, it is essential to have a flexible workforce which can cope with the uneven flow of work.