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In Commercial Law, equal; equality.

The term par refers to an equality that exists between the nominal or face value of a document—such as a bill of exchange or a share of stock—and its actual selling value. When the values are equal, the share is said to be at par; if it can be sold for more than its face value, it is above par; if it is sold for less than its nominal value, it is below par.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


n. 1) equal. 2) the face value of a stock or bond, printed on the certificate, which is the amount the original purchaser paid the issuing corporation. However, most common stocks are issued as "no-par value," and the value reflects the current market for the stock. Preferred stocks state a par value upon which the dividends are calculated, and the par value of bonds establishes the final pay-off amount upon maturity, usually many years in the future. (See: stock, common stock, preferred stock)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

PAR, comm. law. Equal. It is used to denote a state of equality or equal value. Bills of exchange, stocks, and the like, are at par when they sell for their nominal value; above par, or below par, when they sell for more or less.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
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