The difference between money and monies

Note that monies is not the plural form of money,  it means resources, funds.


1 money- Money is the coins or bank notes that you use to buy things, or the sum that you have in a bank account.

  • A lot of the money that you pay at the cinema goes back to the film distributors.
  • Players should be allowed to earn money from advertising.
  • She probably had more money but she didn’t spend it.
  • discounts and money saving offers.

2 money monies or moneys. Monies is used to refer to several separate sums of money that form part of a larger amount that is received or spent. (FORMAL)

  • We drew up a schedule of payments for the rest of the monies owed.
  • the investment and management of monies by pension funds.

From Harper Collins.

Quick definition from an accountant

  • As an accountant, we use monies to refer to funds that are either owed to us or by us that have yet to be received or paid. Of course, the difference between monies and moneys can only be told when in writing, but it seems to do the trick.

Author: Janet Carr

Fashion, beauty and animal loving language consultant from South Africa living in Stockholm, Sweden.

2 thoughts

  1. I am an accountant who has worked 15 years in banks as well as the investment funds industry.

    The word “monies” is the result of a legal clerk making an error in pluralising a word that is usually not pluralised. He (for it would have been a he in the 19th century) used the rule about words ending in a Y being replaced by IES and then conveniently lost the ugly residual E (moneies is weird). He forgot the rule about a Y following a vowel. Because money in the plural has always been relatively rare, no-one picked this up and it became acceptable. However it does not follow the rules and merely adds yet another exception to the list of spelling exceptions.

    We have always tried to avoid “monies”. Moneys is always correct (even in the finance industry – hence my stating where I’ve worked), monies is only acceptable in a small number of cases and is wrong from a spelling rules perspective. Simpler, easier, more aesthetic, follows the rules, moneys is simply better.

  2. can one refer to monies as the combination of different currencies? For instance the doller, pounds, or naira?

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