lowball

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low·ball

(lō′bôl′)
tr.v. low·balled, low·bal·ling, low·balls Informal
To underestimate or understate (a cost) deliberately: "I get hopping mad every time I see a politician lowballing the cost of his latest healthcare boondoggle" (Megan McArdle).

[From the card game of the same name.]

low′ball′ adj.

lowball

(ˈləʊˌbɔːl)
n
1. (Card Games) a game of poker in which the player with the lowest hand wins
2. (Commerce)
a. a very low estimate or offer
b. (as modifier): a lowball bid.
vb
(Commerce) (tr) to make a very low estimate or offer for (a service, product, company, etc)

low•ball

(ˈloʊˌbɔl)

v.t.
1. to deliberately estimate a lower price for than one intends to charge.
2. to give a false estimate for.
[1965–70]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.lowball - make a deliberately low estimatelowball - make a deliberately low estimate; "The construction company wanted the contract badly and lowballed"
estimate, gauge, approximate, guess, judge - judge tentatively or form an estimate of (quantities or time); "I estimate this chicken to weigh three pounds"
References in periodicals archive ?
We usually apply the term "biblical proportions" to droughts as a means of hyperbole, but for the Cubs and the Indians, clubs that have not won titles in 108 and 68 years respectively, this phrase actually lowballs the number40 years (in the desert) significantly.
This is the one country that always lowballs their growth" the OECD's Angel Gurria told the Financial Times.
Traditionally in Iran, the government lowballs numbers and the opposition highballs them, so the best figure was probably 100-odd arrests.