A common gauge of the price sensitivity of an asset or portfolio to a change in interest rates. The New York Times Financial Glossary

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duration du‧ra‧tion [djʊˈreɪʆn ǁ dʊ-] noun [singular, uncountable]
the length of time that something continues:

• We have hired her for the duration of the project.

• Economists predict that the recession will be limited in duration.

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   A measure of the average maturity of a bond's cash flows from both coupons and principal repayment, or how long you have to wait to earn exactly half the expected total return in coupons and principal repayment. A zero coupon bond's duration would be the same as the maturity date because there are no coupons to take into account. Duration, quoted in years, indicates the average exposure to market risk. It allows bonds with different coupons and maturities to be compared. Bonds with higher durations face higher risk from changes in interest rates. Also known as Macauley Duration.
   ► See also Coupon.

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duration UK US /djʊəˈreɪʃən/ noun [C or U]
the length of time that something lasts: a two-year/ten-month/six-week, etc. duration »

Most placements of agency IT staff are of a three-month or six-month duration.


Does the rate only apply for a limited period or for the duration of the loan?

Financial and business terms. 2012.

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