- intermittent growth, increase, expansion, or the like: the ratchet effect of defense expenditures.
Origin of ratchet effect
First recorded in 1965–70
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- economics an effect that occurs when a price or wage increases as a result of temporary pressure but fails to fall back when the pressure is removed