asset

[ as-et ]
/ ˈæs ɛt /

noun

a useful and desirable thing or quality: Organizational ability is an asset.
a single item of ownership having exchange value: Our summer home is an asset we're not willing to sell.
(in intelligence) a person followed or spied upon to obtain information: as a participant in an operation, an asset may be consenting, forced, as by blackmail, or unaware of being used: It was a catalog of virtually every CIA asset within the Soviet Union.Compare confidential informant.
assets,
  1. items of ownership convertible into cash; total resources of a person or business, as cash, notes and accounts receivable, securities, inventories, goodwill, fixtures, machinery, or real estate (opposed to liabilities).
  2. Accounting. the items detailed on a balance sheet, especially in relation to liabilities and capital.
  3. all property available for the payment of debts, especially of a bankrupt or insolvent firm or person.
  4. Law. property in the hands of an heir, executor, or administrator, that is sufficient to pay the debts or legacies of a deceased person.

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Origin of asset

First recorded in 1525–35; back formation from assets, in phrase have assets, literally, “have enough (to pay obligations),” from Anglo-French, Old French asez “enough,” from unattested Vulgar Latin ad satis “to sufficiency”; see also assai1

OTHER WORDS FROM asset

as·set·less, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for asset

British Dictionary definitions for asset

asset
/ (ˈæsɛt) /

noun

anything valuable or usefulexperience is their main asset See also assets

Word Origin for asset

C19: back formation from assets
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for asset

asset

A possession that can be turned into cash to cover liabilities.

notes for asset

Commonly, the term denotes anything of value.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.