discount

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at a discount

1. Below the usual commercial price or value. The prices are so much cheaper over there that I always feel like I'm getting things at a discount.
2. In low regard as to esteem, value, or worth; worthless or undesirable. The rebels were at first celebrated for defying the monarchy, but they are now at a discount since they began attacking civilian targets. Though he was a pioneer of the field, the views of Sigmund Freud are held at a discount by most modern psychologists.
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five-finger discount

Sl. shoplifting. Sam used his five-finger discount to get the kind of ring Jane wanted. I got this necklace by five-finger discount.
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at a discount

At a lower than usual price; also, held in low esteem. For example, I'm holding off on buying a computer until I can get one at a discount, or Liberals are at a discount in the present administration. The first usage, mainly found in business and commerce, dates from about 1700. The figurative usage is about a century newer.
See also: discount

five-finger discount

n. the acquisition of something by shoplifting. Mooshoo used his five-finger discount to get the kind of ring Britney wanted.
See also: discount
References in periodicals archive ?
Of course, most aid at private colleges comes directly from the school rather than state or federal sources (as at public institutions), but the question is a good one: Since most students receive some form of discounting, why not just lower the sticker price of the school and give everyone a break?
Discounting doesn't always increase institutional revenue.
Discounting does not always increase student quality.
Because college finances are difficult to explain--and because college administrators sometimes don't want the public to know where their money comes from or for what purposes it is expended--higher education has been less than forthcoming about such concepts as tuition discounting," he says.
Still, willingness to talk about tuition discounting is far removed from doing anything about it, and reform may be some time in coming, suggests Allegheny College (PA) President Richard Cook.
Tuition discounting has the potential of contributing to the financial distress of colleges.
Tuition discounting does not always lead to improved student quality.
Tuition discounting practices, when combined across all institutions, have restricted access for lower-income students.