[ pawrt-foh-lee-oh, pohrt- ]
See synonyms for portfolio on Thesaurus.com
noun,plural port·fo·li·os.
  1. a flat, portable case for carrying loose papers, drawings, etc.

  2. such a case for carrying documents of a government department.

  1. the total holdings of the securities, commercial paper, etc., of a financial institution or private investor.

  2. the office or post of a minister of state or member of a cabinet.

Origin of portfolio

1715–25; <Italian portafoglio, equivalent to porta-, stem of portare to carry (<Latin portāre) + foglio leaf, sheet (<Latin folium;see foil2)

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British Dictionary definitions for portfolio


/ (pɔːtˈfəʊlɪəʊ) /

nounplural -os
  1. a flat case, esp of leather, used for carrying maps, drawings, etc

  2. the contents of such a case, such as drawings, paintings, or photographs, that demonstrate recent work: an art student's portfolio

  1. such a case used for carrying ministerial or state papers

  2. the responsibilities or role of the head of a government department: the portfolio for foreign affairs

  3. Minister without portfolio a cabinet minister who is not responsible for any government department

  4. the complete investments held by an individual investor or by a financial organization

Origin of portfolio

C18: from Italian portafoglio, from portāre to carry + foglio leaf, paper, from Latin folium leaf

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