[n. ree-beyt; v. ree-beyt, ri-beyt]
rebate, partial refund of the total price paid for goods or services. In the United States, rebates were historically given by railroads to favored shippers as a return on transportation charges. The Elkins Act (1903), the Hepburn Act (1906), and the regulations of the Interstate Commerce Commission prohibit and penalize railroad rebates. A tax rebate from local, state, or federal governments may occur when unexpectedly large tax revenues create a budget surplus. The term is also used to refer to coupons, trading stamps, and other premiums used by retailers to stimulate sales.

Retroactive refund or credit given to a buyer who has purchased a product or service. Fair and equitable rebates are used simply as incentives available to all customers. So-called deferred (or exclusive-patronage) rebates are used by large vendors of perishables and consumer durable goods. To receive such a rebate, the purchaser must agree to buy certain goods or services exclusively from a particular vendor for a fixed period of time. Rebating was a common pricing tactic in the 19th century, often used by large companies to undercut competition from smaller firms. The U.S. railroad industry practiced price discrimination by granting secret rebates to important customers; the rebates granted to Standard Oil Co. helped it acquire a monopoly over the oil industry. Governments occasionally sponsor rebates on previously paid taxes such as property, income, or sales taxes. Tax rebates can be used to stimulate the economy, to return excess revenue to taxpayers, or to encourage specific actions such as energy conservation.

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  • Rebate (marketing), a type of sales promotion used in marketing
  • Rabbet (also spelled rebate), a woodworking term
  • Tax rebate, a reduction in taxation demanded
  • UK rebate, a return of money paid by the United Kingdom for the European Union budget

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