Definition of percent in English:


Syllabification: per·cent
Pronunciation: /pərˈsent
(also chiefly British per cent)


  • By a specified amount in or for every hundred: new car sales may be down nineteen percent staff rejected a 1.8 percent increase
    More example sentences
    • If we are one hundred percent convinced of our case then a little dishonesty to iron out the odd inconsistency hardly seems wrong.
    • There are few if any behavioral characteristics in humans that are one hundred percent genetic.
    • However, my experience of camp food is one hundred percent favourable.


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  • 1One part in every hundred: a reduction of half a percent or so in price
    More example sentences
    • Well, you're one of the, probably, half of a percent of people who would actually do that.
    • According to the report, these prices fell by half a percent in October.
    • To put that in perspective, we humans have been around for half a percent of that.
  • 1.1The rate, number, or amount in each hundred; percentage: the percent of drug users who are infected
    More example sentences
    • They speak of the reciprocal of the payback period as a percent per year rate of return.
    • The second compatibility problem is a slow boot issue and we believe it is a small percent of users that have experienced this.
    • Some of the leases are based on a dollar amount per square foot and some on percent of income.


mid 16th century: from per + cent, perhaps an abbreviation of pseudo-Latin per centum.


Both spellings, percent and per cent, are acceptable, but consistency should be maintained. Percent is more common in US usage; per cent is more common in British usage.

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