sell-off

[ sel-awf, -of ]
/ ˈsɛlˌɔf, -ˌɒf /

noun

Stock Exchange. a sudden and marked decline in stock or bond prices resulting from widespread selling.
an act or instance of liquidating assets or subsidiaries, as by divestiture.
Sometimes sell·ing-off.

Origin of sell-off

First recorded in 1935–40; noun use of verb phrase sell off

Definition for sell off (2 of 2)

Origin of sell

1
before 900; Middle English sellen (v.), Old English sellan orig., to give, hence, give up (someone) to an enemy, betray, exchange for money; cognate with Old Norse selja, Low German sellen, Gothic saljan to give up, sell, orig., to cause to take; akin to Greek heleîn to take

Related forms

sell·a·ble, adjective

Synonym study

1. See trade.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for sell off (1 of 2)

sell off


verb

(tr, adverb) to sell (remaining or unprofitable items), esp at low prices

British Dictionary definitions for sell off (2 of 2)

sell

/ (sɛl) /

verb sells, selling or sold

noun

the act or an instance of sellingCompare hard sell, soft sell
informal
  1. a trick, hoax, or deception
  2. Irish a great disappointmentthe service in the hotel was a sell

Derived Forms

sellable, adjective

Word Origin for sell

Old English sellan to lend, deliver; related to Old Norse selja to sell, Gothic saljan to offer sacrifice, Old High German sellen to sell, Latin cōnsilium advice
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

Idioms and Phrases with sell off (1 of 2)

sell off


Get rid of by selling, often at reduced prices. For example, The jeweler was eager to sell off the last of the diamond rings. [c. 1700] Also see sell out, def. 1.

Idioms and Phrases with sell off (2 of 2)

sell


In addition to the idioms beginning with sell

  • sell a bill of goods
  • sell down the river
  • sell like hot cakes
  • sell off
  • sell oneself
  • sell out
  • sell short
  • sell someone on

also see:

  • hard sell
  • like hot cakes, sell
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.