Which is a better equivalent for “in stock” (meaning a product is in stock)?

  • “at hand”
  • “on hand”
  • “in hand”

Can any of them be used? Which is the most appropriate? Which is second-best?

  • In stock: available for sale or use; on hand. – user66974 Oct 20 '14 at 19:28
  • Related:english.stackexchange.com/questions/55040/… – user66974 Oct 20 '14 at 19:30
  • 3
    "at hand" means "easily available" and could just as easily refer to an inanimate object or a person. "on hand" means "in our inventory", so it's probably closest to "in stock". "in hand" means "I'm literally holding the object right now." – Calphool Oct 20 '14 at 19:58

I would suggest:

On hand

Followed by:

In hand.

I have never heard this and it doesn't sound correct at all:

At hand.

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  • 2
    At Hand is fine....it is for an item that is within current reach, such as your coffee cup or pen at your desk. – Oldcat Oct 21 '14 at 0:34
  • @Oldcat possibly, but I have never heard it in context of products being in stock and it doesn't sound right in that case to me. – aaa90210 Oct 21 '14 at 1:33

I believe on hand is probably the best phrase to use synonymical to in stock. Edit: In response to a question about my reason, it simply seems to sound most fluent in the context, although the other ways of phrasing would also be grammatically valid.

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I'd say they're mostly interchangeable, however there are occasions when I would use one over the other:

"I kept my sword close at hand"

"I remain on hand to help you

"I keep a good deal of cash in hand"

I would use either "on hand" or "in hand" - "The stock I keep on hand is shown on the accounts as "Stock in hand"".

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While studying Financial accounting, I remember always using these terms:

  • Stock-in-hand for Stock balance.
  • Cash-in-hand for Cash balance.
  • Cash-at-Bank for Bank balance.
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