If you no longer have something, you experience a loss, like the loss of a favorite sock. When something lessens, or gets smaller, that's also a loss, as in weight loss.

Loss has lots of opposites that help define what it means. It is the opposite of win, gain, found, or earn. You can take a loss in a game or a race or by misplacing or just plain losing something like a cell phone or money. When a business has more expenses than it can cover in sales, that, too, is called a loss. A difficult loss is when a friend, relative, or pet dies.

Definitions of loss
  1. noun
    the act of losing someone or something
    “everyone expected him to win so his loss was a shock”
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    loss due to not showing up
    capitulation, fall, surrender
    the act of surrendering (usually under agreed conditions)
    type of:
    an act that fails
  2. noun
    the experience of losing a loved one
    “he sympathized on the loss of their grandfather”
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    type of:
    an event as apprehended
  3. noun
    euphemistic expressions for death
    synonyms: departure, exit, expiration, going, passing, release
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    type of:
    death, decease, demise, expiry
    the event of dying or departure from life
  4. noun
    something that is lost
    “the car was a total loss
    loss of livestock left the rancher bankrupt”
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    forfeit, forfeiture
    something that is lost or surrendered as a penalty
    financial loss
    loss of money or decrease in financial value
    a loss entailed by giving up or selling something at less than its value
    anything lost by wear or waste
    default, nonpayment, nonremittal
    loss resulting from failure of a debt to be paid
    capital loss
    the amount by which the purchase price of an asset exceeds the selling price; the loss is realized when the asset is sold
    depreciation, wear and tear
    decrease in value of an asset due to obsolescence or use
    losings, losses
    something lost (especially money lost at gambling)
    type of:
    transferred possession, transferred property
    a possession whose ownership changes or lapses
  5. noun
    military personnel lost by death or capture
    synonyms: personnel casualty
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    combat injury, injury, wound
    a casualty to military personnel resulting from combat
    personnel that are sacrificed (e.g., surrendered or lost in order to gain an objective)
    blighty wound
    a wound that would cause an English soldier to be sent home from service abroad
    flesh wound
    a wound that does not damage important internal organs or shatter any bones
    type of:
    a decrease of military personnel or equipment
  6. noun
    gradual decline in amount or activity
    “weight loss
    “a serious loss of business”
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    loss of hair; the result of removing hair
    loss of excess weight (as by dieting); becoming slimmer
    falling out of hair
    type of:
    decline, diminution
    change toward something smaller or lower
  7. noun
    the disadvantage that results from losing something
    “his loss of credibility led to his resignation”
    synonyms: deprivation
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    type of:
    the quality of having an inferior or less favorable position
  8. noun
    the amount by which the cost of a business exceeds its revenue
    “the company operated at a loss last year”
    synonyms: red, red ink
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    the amount by which the revenue of a business exceeds its cost of operating
    paper loss
    an unrealized loss on an investment calculated by subtracting the current market price from the investor's cost
    a situation in which increased costs cannot be passed on to the customer
    type of:
    amount, amount of money, sum, sum of money
    a quantity of money
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