To jawbone is to talk informally. Think "schmooze," "talk up," or "chit chat;" it's a word to use when the act of talking is more important than what's being talked about.

In a financial or political context, jawboning is a form of persuasion. When Lyndon B. Johnson attempted to jawbone rising interest-rates in 1966, he was attempting to change the behavior of the markets without taking direct action. Franklin D. Roosevelt's Fireside Chats can be seen as jawboning as well, as FDR enlisted support first for New Deal programs and then for the US role in World War II through informal, friendly radio-broadcast "chats."

Definitions of jawbone

n the jaw in vertebrates that is hinged to open the mouth

jowl, lower jaw, lower jawbone, mandible, mandibula, mandibular bone, submaxilla
lantern jaw
a long thin lower jaw
Type of:
a movable speech organ
the part of the skull of a vertebrate that frames the mouth and holds the teeth

v talk idly or casually and in a friendly way

schmoose, schmooze, shmoose, shmooze
Type of:
chaffer, chat, chatter, chew the fat, chit-chat, chitchat, claver, confab, confabulate, gossip, jaw, natter, shoot the breeze, visit
talk socially without exchanging too much information

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