A Word A Day : Fungible

Thursday, 10th January 2008 : Today's Word is ...


( Adjective & Noun )

Pronunciation : fún-je-b'l

1. Returnable or negotiable in kind or by substitution, as a quantity of grain for an equal amount of the same kind of grain ( LAW )

2. Anything that is interchangeable

3. Something that is exchangeable or substitutable ( Often used in the plural )

4. Describes commodities that can be traded or substituted for an equal amount of a like commodity, usually to satisfy a contract


Financial instrument equivalent in value to another, and easily exchanged or substituted. A dollar bill loaned has the same value as a dollar paid back. Bearer securities and stocks issued in the same class have this quality, as well as exchange traded options and mortgages in a pool of loans supporting a mortgage backed security.

A description applied to items of which each unit is identical to every other unit, such as in the case of grain, oil, or flour.


Late 17th century - medieval Latin fungibilis - Latin fungi - perform


changeable, commutable, compatible, converse, convertible, correspondent, equivalent, exchangeable, fungible, identical, interconvertible, mutual, reciprocal, reciprocative, same, substitutable, synonymous, workalike


incompatible, rigid

Contextual Examples:

• Oil is fungible. It is all one global market. And if China wants to overpay for a second-tier U.S. energy company, that's China's business.

Fungible goods are those that can readily be estimated and replaced according to weight, measure, and amount.

• Oil, wheat, and lumber are fungible commodities.

Related Words:

fungibility: Noun

fungibles: Noun

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