When you guess about how something is going to come out (or how it happened), that's speculation. You're making an educated guess.

When people predict who will win a football game, an Oscar, or an election, it's speculation: people are looking at the facts and making their best guess. Just about anything you say about the future is speculation, because no one knows what will happen. The word is used in the stock market for such financial dealings as "buying on spec," a risky way to make money. Sometimes, this word means something close to meditation — pondering something deeply.

Definitions of speculation

n continuous and profound contemplation or musing on a subject or series of subjects of a deep or abstruse nature

Type of:
contemplation, musing, reflection, reflexion, rumination, thoughtfulness
a calm, lengthy, intent consideration

n a hypothesis that has been formed by speculating or conjecturing (usually with little hard evidence)

speculations about the outcome of the election”
Type of:
hypothesis, possibility, theory
a tentative insight into the natural world; a concept that is not yet verified but that if true would explain certain facts or phenomena

n a message expressing an opinion based on incomplete evidence

conjecture, guess, hypothesis, supposition, surmisal, surmise
successful conjecture by unusual insight or good luck
Type of:
opinion, view
a message expressing a belief about something; the expression of a belief that is held with confidence but not substantiated by positive knowledge or proof

n an investment that is very risky but could yield great profits

“he knew the stock was a speculation when he bought it”
show 4 types...
hide 4 types...
money that is risked for possible monetary gain
smart money
money bet or invested by experienced gamblers or investors (especially if they have inside information)
(stock market) a series of transactions in which the speculator increases his holdings by using the rising market value of those holdings as margin for further purchases
bet, stake, stakes, wager
the money risked on a gamble
Type of:
investment, investment funds
money that is invested with an expectation of profit

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.