In name only. Differences in compounding cause the nominal rate to differ from the effective interest rate. Inflation causes the purchasing power of money to differ from one time to another. The New York Times Financial Glossary

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nominal nom‧i‧nal [ˈnɒmnl ǁ ˈnɑː-] adjective
1. nominal head/​leader etc someone who has the title of head, leader etc but does not have the normal responsibilities, powers etc of that job:

• Although he remained the nominal head of the campaign, his deputy took over responsibility for it.

2. a nominal sum of money is very small, compared to the usual amount that would be paid or charged for something:

• He charges a nominal amount for his software, enough to cover expenses.

3. ACCOUNTING a nominal figure, level etc is not the real one because something such as inflation has not been taken into account:

• While the Fed can peg the nominal federal funds rate, it cannot control the real rate ( i.e. the nominal rate minus the rate of inflation).

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   Unadjusted for inflation.
   A calculation of nominal economic growth simply adds up the total of goods and services in current cash terms and makes no adjustment for inflation, which may lead to great overstatement of the real, underlying position. ► See also Real.

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nominal UK US /ˈnɒmɪnəl/ adjective
very small, or smaller than the usual amount: »

The hotel developers will lease the land for a nominal fee .


We pay our volunteers a nominal amount.


The costs incurred to activate the new service would be nominal.

used to describe something that is said to be a particular thing, but is not actually that thing: »

Although he has retired, the company is still under his nominal control.


He regarded this responsibility as purely nominal.

ECONOMICS a nominal amount relates to prices or rates that are correct at the present time but do not show the effect of inflation: »

Merchandise imports have expanded significantly faster than world trade in both real and nominal dollar values.

Financial and business terms. 2012.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • nominal — nominal, ale, aux [ nɔminal, o ] adj. et n. m. • 1503; lat. nominalis, de nomen « nom » I ♦ Ling. 1 ♦ Qui se rapporte au nom (III), a valeur de nom, équivaut à un nom. Emploi nominal d un mot. Formes nominales de la conjugaison (infinitifs,… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • nominal — nom·i·nal / nä mən əl/ adj 1: existing or being something in name or form but usu. not in reality defenses...raised by the corporation as nominal defendant in a derivative suit R. C. Clark 2: being so small or trivial as to be a mere token… …   Law dictionary

  • nominal — NOMINÁL, Ă, nominali, e, adj. 1. Care conţine nume, care indica un nume, de nume; după nume; pe nume. ♢ Valoare nominală = valoare indicată pe o acţiune, pe o hârtie monedă (care uneori nu corespunde cu valoarea reală; valoare oficială. Putere… …   Dicționar Român

  • nominal — (Del lat. nominālis). 1. adj. Perteneciente o relativo al nombre. 2. Que tiene nombre de algo y le falta la realidad de ello en todo o en parte. Sueldo, empleo nominal. 3. Com. Dicho de una inscripción o de un título: nominativo. 4. Ling. Dicho… …   Diccionario de la lengua española

  • Nominal — Nom i*nal, a. [L. nominalis, fr. nomen, nominis, name. See {Name}.] 1. Of or pertaining to a name or names; having to do with the literal meaning of a word; verbal; as, a nominal definition. Bp. Pearson. [1913 Webster] 2. Existing in name only;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • nominal — nominal, ale (no mi nal, na l ) adj. 1°   Qui est relatif au nom. •   Il arrive si souvent, et surtout en histoire naturelle, qu une erreur nominale entraîne une erreur réelle...., BUFF. Ois. t. III, p. 352.    Terme de logique. Définition… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • nominal — adj. 2 g. 1. Relativo ao nome. 2. Formado só de nomes. 3. Que só existe em nome. ≠ REAL 4. Em que se menciona o nome do indivíduo (ex.: cheque nominal, votação nominal). 5.  [Economia] Que corresponde a um valor definido e não tem em conta, por… …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

  • nominal — adjetivo 1. Que sólo existe de nombre, y no es efectivo o real: cargo nominal. 2. Área: gramática [Oración, sintagma] que desempeña la misma función que un nombre. 3. [ …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • Nominal — bezeichnet: namentlich, zum Nennwert das Münznominal den Nominal (Glocke), Schlagton für die Tonhöhe einer Kirchenglocke Das Adjektiv nominal bezeichnet in der Wirtschaftswissenschaft eine nicht inflationsbereinigte Größe, Gegenteil: reale Größe… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • nominal — [näm′ə nəl] adj. [ME nominalle < L nominalis, of a name < nomen, NAME] 1. of, consisting of, having the nature of, or giving a name or names 2. of or having to do with a noun or nouns 3. in name only, not in fact [the nominal leader] 4.… …   English World dictionary

  • Nominal — Nom i*nal, n. 1. A nominalist. [Obs.] Camden. [1913 Webster] 2. (Gram.) A verb formed from a noun. [1913 Webster] 3. A name; an appellation. [1913 Webster] A is the nominal of the sixth note in the natural diatonic scale. Moore (Encyc. of Music.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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