What does 'K' mean in '20K' when talking about prices?

11

What is the meaning of 'K' in 20K or 30K or 40K when disclosing price?

Pathik Vejani

Posted 2014-11-13T04:43:16.400

Reputation: 222

Answers

12

True. The letter is described to show '1000'. The prefix 'kilo' is derived from the Greek word chilioi or khilioi. Its short form was used for the metric system.

I still remember the first time I heard of 'K' used for 1000 other than kilogram or kilometer was when the 'Y2K' bug threatened the entire world! I was curious to know and discovered that it was 'Year 2000 bug'. Since then, using 'K' for a thousand (anything) hasn't been an uncommon usage.

Good read is here on a Math Forum

Maulik V

Posted 2014-11-13T04:43:16.400

Reputation: 66 188

@Maulik V How is this 'k' pronounced? For example: Can 20k simply be pronounced as 'twenty k'? – Dinusha – 2016-07-07T20:32:52.317

1yes, 'K' as in alphabet. 'kay'. @Dinusha – Maulik V – 2016-07-08T05:13:43.503

8

The SI prefix for a thousand is kilo-, officially abbreviated as k—for instance, prefixed to "metre" or its abbreviation m, kilometre or km signifies a thousand metres. As such, people occasionally represent the number in a non-standard notation by replacing the last three zeros of the general numeral with "k": for instance, 30k for 30,000.

rydz

Posted 2014-11-13T04:43:16.400

Reputation: 81

7

'K' is short for 1,000. It comes from 'kilo'.

michelle

Posted 2014-11-13T04:43:16.400

Reputation: 2 259

3

It's short for "thousand", just like how kilometers (km) are a thousand meters (m).

Stephen Voris

Posted 2014-11-13T04:43:16.400

Reputation: 480

1

Also, in computers K means 2**10 (two to the 10th power) = 1024. But in prices (or miles on car) it means 1000.

Peter M. - stands for Monica

Posted 2014-11-13T04:43:16.400

Reputation: 238

-1

As such, people occasionally represent the number in a non-standard notation by replacing the last three zeros of the general numeral with "K": for instance, 30K for 30,000.

Bshayer Alakrai

Posted 2014-11-13T04:43:16.400

Reputation: 17

1Welcome to ELL! The other two answers from more than a year ago already mentioned this point; can you add more to the answer to make it stand out? – Nathan Tuggy – 2016-03-31T23:58:15.557

Four other answers, actually...from two years ago. – zondo – 2016-04-01T00:22:50.630