prime rate

noun Banking.
the minimum interest rate charged by a commercial bank on short-term business loans to large, best-rated customers or corporations.
Also called prime, prime interest rate, prime lending rate.


Origin:
1955–60

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Collins
World English Dictionary
prime rate
 
n
the lowest commercial interest rate charged by a bank at a particular time

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

prime rate definition


The interest rate that banks charge to corporations that are considered excellent risks.

Note: The prime rate is usually the lowest prevailing interest rate; if it rises, rates available to consumers will soon rise.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
As a rule, credit-card rates are quick to rise along with the prime rate, but
  fall more slowly.
The prime rate is used for many short-term consumer and business loans.
Its business customers include payday lenders, rental purchase stores and
  non-prime rate auto lenders.
Loans will be amortized at one point below prime rate on the date of loan
  closing over a fifteen year term.
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