Definition: Percent

From New World Encyclopedia


From New Latin per centum (“by the hundred”).


  1. For every hundred (used with preceding numeral to form a noun phrase expressing a proportion).
    A resolution must receive fifty-one percent of the votes to pass.

Usage notes

  • A percentage is often denoted by the character %.
    50% denotes 50 percent.
  • The difference of two percentages is measured by percentage point, not by percent.
  • In the UK, per cent is the normal form.


percent (plural percent or percents)

  1. A percentage, a proportion (especially per hundred).
    only a small percent attain the top ranks
  2. One part per hundred; one percent.
  3. The percent sign, %.
  4. An annuity or security with a certain fixed and guaranteed annual percentage rate of return or percentage dividend.


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