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1. An amount paid or required in payment for a purchase; a price.
2. The expenditure of something, such as time or labor, necessary for the attainment of a goal: "Freedom to advocate unpopular causes does not require that such advocacy be without cost" (Milton Friedman).
3. costs Law Charges incurred in bringing litigation, including court fees and charges that may be payable by the losing party, but usually not including attorneys' fees.
v. cost, cost·ing, costs
To require a specified payment, expenditure, effort, or loss: It costs more to live in the city.
1. To have as a price.
2. To cause to lose, suffer, or sacrifice: Participating in the strike cost me my job.
3. past tense and past participle costed To estimate or determine the cost of: The accountants costed out our expenses.
at all costs
Regardless of the expense or effort involved; by any means.

[Middle English, from Old French, from coster, to cost, from Latin cōnstāre, to be fixed, cost; see constant.]

cost′less adj.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.costless - costing nothing; "complimentary tickets"; "free admission"
unpaid - not paid; "unpaid wages"; "an unpaid bill"
References in periodicals archive ?
Moreover, the frictional difficulties associated with the end of the transition period--no decision as bad as that to join what was then the EEC in the first place can be reversed totally costlessly, however great the costs of not reversing it would be--would be felt just a year before the next scheduled general election.
Eusepi and Wagner make the important observation that as "a practical matter of democratic operation, the ideal of a cooperative democracy is surely limited to relatively small-scale democracies," which is why they work with the example of a town "that contains a few thousand people at most, and where people can easily and nearly costlessly move somewhere else if they choose to do so" (p.
The extreme example is a monopoly, in which a single firm serves the whole market and is able to immediately and costlessly profit from the absence of competition by naming its price.
Throughout the article, we assume that the insurer can costlessly observe output realizations [y.
We also assume that the firm can costlessly hedge its entire exposure to risk [Z.
Accordingly, we will consider three cases, all of which are of practical importance in some settings: when prospective injurers cannot foresee the precise harm they will cause but only average harm; when they can perfectly and costlessly foresee the precise harm; and when they can do so but only if they incur a cost.
If one can costlessly impose a small loss on others by withholding esteem, or costlessly impose a small gain by granting esteem, there is no incentive to free ride'.
Of course, there would still be court costs to prosecute the fraudulent voters, but the deterrent effect of a higher fine would costlessly reduce the number of potential fraudulent voters and reduce monitoring costs.
Financial arbitrage involves developing new and better algorithms that can be deployed almost costlessly, whereas in manufacturing arbitrage typically involves expensive actions like moving plants from one location to another or implementing new production processes.
In a zero transaction cost world, the Coase Theorem shows that we could use any devices with any degree of tailoring to protect use interests, and if such devices were not optimal for those concerned--however many they are--they would transact costlessly toward the efficient result.
potential resource user could costlessly determine which rights he
Once we are out of the world of apparent abundance, getting out of the bust is not as easy as Keynes makes it seem by just spending more and bringing the factors of production costlessly into the process.