Definition of liquidate in English:



  • 1Wind up the affairs of (a company or firm) by ascertaining liabilities and apportioning assets.

    • ‘Some have shut businesses and liquidated entire companies just to collect the cash in the till.’
    • ‘They worried that some newspaper organizations essentially, if unwittingly, are liquidating their businesses.’
    • ‘One woman was forced to liquidate her business for lack of funds.’
    • ‘The trustee's job is to liquidate bankrupt companies to repay bondholders.’
    • ‘And she is still fighting the same ‘renegade’ IRS agent, who, she says, seems hell-bent on liquidating the business.’
    • ‘In a liquidation, the holding company bond investors only recover what's left after the assets of the subsidiaries are liquidated to pay off the creditors of those subsidiaries - usually banks and trade creditors.’
    • ‘They then liquidate the business and, hopefully, share out the profits.’
    • ‘How is liquidating an Internet company different from dissolving any other type of company?’
    • ‘Organizations can be disbanded, and, indeed, frequently are, as when, for example, businesses are liquidated.’
    • ‘Whenever one becomes insolvent, liquidate it and create a new one under new management.’
    • ‘The corporate raider said in a statement last week it intends to sell off or liquidate the business if no buyer comes forward, with the potential loss of 50 jobs.’
    • ‘Its retail business was ultimately liquidated in 2000.’
    • ‘In some cases employers have deliberately established shelf companies without assets, in order to avoid paying out entitlements when they liquidate their businesses.’
    • ‘Launched in August, it employed 10 people but at a recent board meeting it was decided to liquidate the business because of failure to make enough money or find extra funding.’
    • ‘Book value is the value of a company's assets if they were liquidated.’
    • ‘The first company is then liquidated, and its capital repaid to its shareholders.’
    • ‘Management was threatening to liquidate the company if it did not receive adequate concessions.’
    • ‘You can liquidate their business if they don't pay the money.’
    • ‘I always enjoy the arguments presented in favor of liquidating our business.’
    • ‘Rather than handing it more taxpayer dollars, it should liquidate this railroad and allow private companies to salvage the potentially profitable routes.’
    close down, wind up, put into liquidation, dissolve, break up, disband, terminate
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    1. 1.1no object (of a company) undergo liquidation.
      • ‘If the point is reached where the financial returns are no longer attractive, your business will liquidate as your investors and lenders put their money elsewhere.’
      • ‘Investing in a company that is liquidating is playing in a high-risk arena that can be lucrative when done right.’
      • ‘Overwhelmingly, those businesses liquidate because of dynamic, control and business reasons.’
      • ‘Since its members will likely get next to nothing if it liquidates, the committee is now seen as an ally to the airline's bid for survival.’
      • ‘After years of struggles and being unable to recognize the changing market, last October, it finally gave up the ghost and decided to liquidate.’
      • ‘Without the cost savings, it said it would be forced to liquidate by February.’
    2. 1.2 Convert (assets) into cash.
      ‘a plan to liquidate $10,000,000 worth of property over seven years’
      • ‘Even if it means selling off their valuable assets and liquidating their monitory investments to do so, it must urgently be done.’
      • ‘All of the estate's assets have been liquidated.’
      • ‘Obviously, liquidators must follow the same rules you do when the inventory being liquidated is firearms.’
      • ‘It might sound plausible, ‘but what it really tells you is that the company is liquidating assets - and that's not good’.’
      • ‘Many people are forced to reallocate household budgets away from spending on schooling and healthcare, to change their living arrangements, and to liquidate their assets in order to smooth consumption during a crisis.’
      • ‘But, until the assets have been liquidated and the resulting court cases completed, nobody knows what the final cost to shareholders will be.’
      • ‘The only way out from the deadlock situation is to liquidate the scandalous holding and start anew.’
      • ‘The finance giants have liquidated their assets, and their grand banking halls have found a new lease of life as dens of iniquity of a different sort.’
      • ‘Also, speculators still had many units on hand and had been liquidating their holdings.’
      • ‘The family liquidated their holdings in the company last October.’
      • ‘Rather than go bankrupt, he liquidated the remaining assets from the failed project and paid off almost all of his debts.’
      • ‘The activity of the collateral is the speed at which it can be liquidated and converted into cash.’
      • ‘The consumer operation will keep running for a few weeks to liquidate inventory.’
      • ‘John Thomas Molson retired and liquidated the distilling assets his father had left him.’
      • ‘Police believe he has since liquidated his assets and transferred them to the Republic of Ireland.’
      • ‘If you sell, you liquidate an asset that might otherwise be a worry.’
      • ‘It has since ceased all operations in Mexico and liquidated its assets there.’
      • ‘As businesses liquidated inventories, they decreased their indebtedness to banks and acquired government debt.’
      • ‘Based on the revised data for third-quarter gross domestic product, businesses liquidated inventories last quarter at the fastest rate in any quarter since World War II.’
      • ‘The rails were pulled up, the assets liquidated, and the line abandoned.’
      convert to cash, convert, cash, cash in, sell off, sell up, realize
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    3. 1.3 Pay off (a debt).
      • ‘He proposed that the first step towards liquidating the short-term debt should be through a limited issue of paper money by a National Bank.’
      • ‘During this period the German currency collapsed into hyperinflation, bankrupting entire sections of the middle class, but benefiting sections of industry which were able to liquidate their debts.’
      • ‘He says that the first option he proposed was to sell its equipment and liquidate its debts.’
      • ‘If the Scottish parliament was jealous of its honour, the least it could have done was direct that the first year's pension money should be paid to Westminster to liquidate this debt.’
      • ‘One wonders how the inoperative council is supposed to generate the much needed finances to liquidate the debts.’
      • ‘Sales of vast tracts of land belonging to religious houses and the former rulers also provided the capital needed to liquidate the debts of the ancien régime and establish state and public finances on a new and more solid basis.’
      pay off, pay, pay in full, settle, clear, discharge, square, make good, honour, defray, satisfy, account for
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  • 2informal Eliminate, typically by violent means; kill.

    • ‘After Mary's murderer brutally kills his cousin/accomplice and nearly liquidates McGee, Travis fakes his death at sea and covertly returns to Florida.’
    • ‘In course of time even some European states adopted terrorism to liquidate, wipe out and transplant unwanted peoples.’
    • ‘We should guard against emotionally driven demands to kill many bystanders in an effort to liquidate our enemy.’
    • ‘Sending out a kill squad to liquidate an innocent researcher would just prompt a lot of questions I didn't have any answers to.’
    • ‘On August 2, 1944, the SS liquidated the Gypsy camp and killed most of the remaining inmates in the gas chambers.’
    • ‘Hardly noticed, they are liquidated in extermination camps.’
    • ‘They point to the fact that, on top of the estimated six million Jews liquidated in the Final Solution, millions of gypsies, homosexuals, political radicals and Soviet prisoners-of-war also met their deaths in the ovens.’
    • ‘In principle, I'm sorry we didn't liquidate him.’
    • ‘The offender got what he richly deserved and it is a shame more people like that are not liquidated by security guards, police and defence.’
    • ‘What if the man, who had liquidated her and been subsequently nabbed, were to be hanged for the justice he had meted out?’
    • ‘And it was at this very moment I resolved to kill her - liquidate her once and for all so that she could never become a challenge to me.’
    • ‘Based on the slightest suspicion, I would be totally isolated or liquidated.’
    • ‘In the 1930s and 1940s they saw hundreds of thousands of their fellow members liquidated, without a murmur of opposition.’
    • ‘All ‘former Trotskyists’ were to be tracked down and liquidated.’
    • ‘He was principally concerned with liquidating all the Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto.’
    • ‘He destroyed what people fought for in 1917 and he physically liquidated many of the people who fought in 1917 because they carried the memory of the revolution.’
    • ‘If a Global Messiah emerges to popularise the practice of voluntary simplicity and the rejection of Hollywood, will he be liquidated by a robo-assassin?’
    • ‘I discuss the possibility of having him liquidated with elements of the intelligence community who are on-message, but we reluctantly agree he would be more trouble dead than alive.’
    • ‘From the moment you and your people are liquidated like so many dogs you have to retain your importance…’
    • ‘He said at the end if I asked another question he'd have me liquidated.’
    massacre, murder, butcher, kill, kill off, annihilate, exterminate, execute, eliminate, destroy, decimate, wipe out, mow down, cut down, cut to pieces, put to the sword, put to death, send to the gas chambers
    kill, murder, cause the death of, end the life of, take the life of, do away with, make away with, assassinate, do to death, eliminate, terminate, dispatch, finish off, put to death, execute
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Mid 16th century (in the sense ‘set out (accounts) clearly’): from medieval Latin liquidat- ‘made clear’, from the verb liquidare, from Latin liquidus (see liquid). liquidate (sense 1) was influenced by Italian liquidare and French liquider, liquidate (sense 2) by Russian likvidirovatʹ.