I. noun Date: 1905 1. a. profit, reward b. retribution 2. the act or occasion of receiving money or material gain especially as compensation or as a bribe 3. the climax of an incident or enterprise; specifically the denouement of a narrative 4. a decisive fact or factor resolving a situation or bringing about a definitive conclusion II. adjective Date: 1932 yielding results in the final test ; decisive

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Payoff — may refer to: * A payoff dominant equilibrium in game theory * Payoff matrix or payoff function in a normal form game in game theory * Payoff set in set theory * Du ji (AKA Payoff ), a 1979 film directed by Yen Hua. * Payoff (film), a 1991 TV… …   Wikipedia

  • payoff — OBED has an additional sense subsumed by our more general s.1 pay‧off [ˈpeɪɒf ǁ ɒːf] noun [countable] 1. a good result from a particular plan, project etc: • The company s biggest payoff came in May when it made $18.4 million. • This low risk… …   Financial and business terms

  • payoff — pay·off / pā ˌȯf/ n 1: the act or an instance of paying someone off: bribe compare kickback 2: the act of paying a debt or creditor in full would release the lien upon the payoff of the balance …   Law dictionary

  • payoff — (n.) also pay off, 1905, winnings from gambling, from PAY (Cf. pay) (v.) + OFF (Cf. off). Meaning graft, bribes first attested 1930. Phrase to pay off be profitable is first recorded 1951 …   Etymology dictionary

  • payoff — [n] conclusion, climax adjustment, clincher*, consequence, culmination, day of reckoning*, finale, final reckoning*, judgment, moment of truth*, outcome, pay, payment, punch line*, result, retribution, reward, settlement, upshot*; concepts… …   New thesaurus

  • payoff — ☆ payoff [pā′ôf΄ ] n. 1. the act, event, or time of payment 2. a settlement or reckoning 3. that which is paid off; return: recompense 4. Informal a bribe 5. Informal something coming as a climax or culmination to a series of events, esp. when… …   English World dictionary

  • payoff — [[t]pe͟ɪɒf[/t]] payoffs also pay off 1) N COUNT: oft N from n The payoff from an action is the advantage or benefit that you get from it. If such materials became generally available to the optics industry the payoffs from such a breakthrough… …   English dictionary

  • payoff — UK [ˈpeɪˌɒf] / US [ˈpeɪˌɔf] noun [countable] Word forms payoff : singular payoff plural payoffs 1) a payment that you make to someone as part of an agreement so that they do not cause trouble for you His ex wife pocketed a £20 million payoff… …   English dictionary

  • payoff — pay|off [ peı,ɔf ] noun count 1. ) the benefit you get from doing something: Until now the payoff of these reforms has not been seen. 2. ) a payment that you make to someone as part of an agreement so that they do not cause trouble for you: His… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • payoff — /pay awf , of /, n. 1. the payment of a salary, debt, wager, etc. 2. the time at which such payment is made. 3. the consequence, outcome, or final sequence in a series of events, actions, or circumstances: The payoff was when they fired him. 4.… …   Universalium

  • payoff — n. to make a payoff * * * [ peɪɒf] to make a payoff …   Combinatory dictionary

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