plus or minus

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plus or minus

1. Indicating a margin above and below a certain level. The margin of error is plus or minus three points, so we're still comfortably ahead of the national average. As the report is outside of the plus or minus 2 percent tolerance threshold, the bank has decided not to go through with the deal.
2. Approximately; roughly. There were maybe 20 people there, plus or minus. You'll need plus or minus 200 feet of cable if you want to reach the other side of the house.
3. With or without. Used especially in reference to medical treatments. Our current go-to treatment is a full course of chemotherapy, plus or minus an antiemetic depending on patient tolerance.
See also: minus, plus

plus-minus

more or less; roughly. South African
1992 Weekend Post He expected ‘plus-minus’ 1000 files would eventually be forwarded for ‘possible prosecution’.

plus or ˈminus

used when the number mentioned may actually be more or less by a particular amount: The margin of error was plus or minus three percentage points.
See also: minus, plus
References in periodicals archive ?
The survey used face-to-face interviews with 1,200 respondents and had a margin of error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points for national percentages.
The survey, first published in BusinessWorld, had a margin of error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.
The survey, first published in BusinessWorld, used interviews of 1,200 respondents and had a margin of error of plus-or-minus 3 percent.
The survey used face-to-face interviews with 1,200 adults and had a margin of error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.
The survey, first published in BusinessWorld, used face-to-face interviews and had a margin of error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.
The survey used face-to-face interviews of 1,200 adult respondents nationwide and had a margin of error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points for national percentages.
The survey used face-to-face interviews and had an error margin of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.