I heard the following statement of Barron’s magazine piggybacked to today’s (April 28) AP radio news over AFN broadasting:

“Two thirds of the money managers we surveyed think we are due for collection of 10 per cent in the next twelve months before stocks resume their rise. Favorable stocks, General Electric currently tops the list. The Big Money crowd also likes bank shares such as Bank of America and Citi Group.”

As I’m unfamiliar with the word, “Big Money crowd,” I looked for the usage of this word and found a pretty old example:

With bond yields edging up, about a third of the Big Money crowd thinks utility shares will be the worst performers in the next 12 months.” - online.barrons.com 2013/10/21

What does Big Money crowd mean, particularly ‘crowd’ here mean? Is Big Money a proper noun as B and M are shown in uppercase in the above Barron's example? Is "crowd" a mass noun that takes verb in singlar form like "likes" and "thinks"?

  • 1
    'Big Money crowd' is a proper noun, a fairly novel compound (or at least an accepted collocation). It is still partially decomposable in that 'crowd' is seen to be a collective noun. In the UK (if 'Big Money crowd' were commonly used), notional agreement would often be used in this case ('the Big Money crowd think'), the members of the group rather than the nebulous super-organism being referenced. Apr 28, 2014 at 7:53
  • 1
    In this context, crowd is used much like the word world is sometimes used. If I say, The racing world was shocked when..., I'm referring to those who have a vested interest in racing: owners, managers, executives, racers, and fans. I can also say, The racing crowd was shocked when.... In that sentence, the word crowd could be referring to a crowd of spectators a particular race, or the word crowd could also refer to the racing world.
    – J.R.
    Apr 28, 2014 at 8:26

2 Answers 2


It refers to Institutional Investors, that is 'Financial Institutions' that manage money on account of private people or private and public companies.

Big Money refers to the fact that they collect and manage huge amounts of money (namely billions of dollars)

Crowd refers to the fact that there are quite a lot of these financial institutions in the business of money/asset management.

  • I hadn't thought much about the "quite a lot" part. I suppose if the number was smaller, the author might have used "club" instead of "crowd", which often implies some measure of exclusivity, and therefore smaller numbers. (That said, there's no fixed point on the number line where a club turns into a crowd.)
    – J.R.
    Apr 28, 2014 at 8:31
  • I see your point, but I think that here crowd refers to the 'densely populated' world of the financial institutions. Just my view.
    – user66974
    Apr 28, 2014 at 8:41
  • In the world of financial institutions, how many of them fall into the Big Money crowd? Quite a few local banks probably wouldn't, which is why I'd consider that world sparsely populated. Anyhow, here's an interesting list; are all those institutions in the "Big Money crowd"? Or just the ones that are household names? The beautiful thing about English is that it's not precisely defined – if it were, there would be very little to talk about on ELU :^)
    – J.R.
    Apr 28, 2014 at 8:52

Is "crowd" a mass noun that takes verb in singlar form like "likes" and "thinks"?

This can depend whether you are in the USA or the UK. The USA considers Congress to be a single thing: Congress thinks that .... The UK considers Parliament to be the members that constitute it: Parliament think that ....

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