What does over-the-counter mean?

Definitions for over-the-counter

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word over-the-counter.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. nonprescription(a), over-the-counter(a)(adj)

    purchasable without a doctor's prescription

    "nonprescription drugs"; "an over-the-counter cold remedy"

  2. over-the-counter, otc(adj)

    (of securities) not traded on a stock exchange

    "over-the-counter stocks"


  1. over-the-counter(Adjective)

    Legal for sale or distribution without the requirement of a prescription (of medicine and other treatments); abbreviated as OTC.

  2. over-the-counter(Adjective)

    Direct interaction between two parties without an intermediary. Thus, any market where items such as stocks or currency are bought and sold at a distance, rather than on the exchange.

  3. Origin: over + the + counter


  1. Over-the-counter

    Over-the-counter or off-exchange trading is done directly between two parties, without any supervision of an exchange. It is contrasted with exchange trading, which occurs via these facilities. An exchange has the benefit of facilitating liquidity, mitigates all credit risk concerning the default of one party in the transaction, provides transparency, and maintains the current market price. In an OTC trade, the price is not necessarily made public information. OTC trading, as well as exchange trading, occurs with commodities, financial instruments, and derivatives of such. Products traded on the exchange must be well standardized. This means that exchanged deliverables match a narrow range of quantity, quality, and identity which is defined by the exchange and identical to all transactions of that product. This is necessary for there to be transparency in trading. The OTC market does not have this limitation. They may agree on an unusual quantity, for example. In OTC market contracts are bilateral, each party could have credit risk concerns with respect to the other party. OTC derivative market is significant in some asset classes: interest rate, foreign exchange, equities, and commodities.


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of over-the-counter in Chaldean Numerology is: 3

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of over-the-counter in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Sample Sentences & Example Usage

  1. Kevin Burke:

    They both admitted that they had decided to switch to over-the-counter insulin.

  2. Joe Graedon:

    We keep hearing that Listerine works when standard over-the-counter lice shampoos and conditioners fail.

  3. Madeline Bernstein:

    You wouldn't immediately jump over the counter and scream, 'Liar,' to think that we would just not look into it is a bit naive.

  4. Penelope Good:

    It's surprising how savvy the parents are, with the Internet and everything, they know that the over-the-counter stuff is not going to work.

  5. Kevin Burke:

    I didn't realize that insulin was over the counter in Indiana until two of my patients, who were in good control, suddenly had increased glucoses.

Images & Illustrations of over-the-counter

  1. over-the-counter

Translations for over-the-counter

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"over-the-counter." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 18 Mar. 2018. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/over-the-counter>.

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