Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Idioms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to Churning: Churning butter, churning out


Excessive trading of a client's account in order to increase the broker's commissions.


To make both buy and sell orders through different brokers, usually in large quantities, to create the impression of increased interest in a security and thereby raise its price. An investor churns if he/she has a long position on the security and wishes to sell it at an artificially high price. Churning is a form of manipulation, and is illegal under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. See also: Fix.


If a broker intentionally mishandles buying and selling securities in your investment account, it's known as churning.

The broker might buy and sell securities at an excessive rate, or at a rate that's inconsistent with your investment goals or the amount of money you have invested.

One indication of potential churning is that you're paying more in commissions than you are earning on your investments. Churning is illegal but is often hard to prove.

References in periodicals archive ?
My question still today is: Did I enjoy churning because I like to be creative, or did churning teach me to be aware of the beauty of creation?
Krupp is churning to be free at Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles.
This churning of customers from lower level services to new, more advanced technologies is a necessary evil, however, and telco's must take a two-pronged approach in their strategy: They must provide increasingly advanced services to meet the growing needs of their customer-base, and at the same time, they must encourage customers to "churn up," or spend more money every month.
Meru) is torn out to use as a churning stick and is steadied at the bottom of the ocean by Vishnu in his aspect as the tortoise Kurma.
I'm told my great-grandma Mathews held a nursing baby with her right arm while churning butter with her left hand by rocking a glass jar of cream across her leg.