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to provide services "at arm's length"

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Dec 20, 2007
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I was reading about banking services and i met the sentence "to provide such services at arm's length. What does it mean exactly?

Thank you in advance


Key Member
Sep 13, 2007
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Attention: I'm not a teacher.

Hi nipava,

arm length

The length of the arm measured from top of the clavicle to the tip of the middle finger, with the arm straight down at the side of the body.

arm's length
The noun has one meaning: a distance sufficient to exclude intimacy

at arm's length

At a distance, avoiding intimacy or familiarity, as in Bill hated seeing his colleagues outside the office, preferring to keep all of them at arm's length, or She was friendly only when he was safely at arm's length. Now often used with the verb keep, this term for distancing oneself from a person, organization, or issue originated as at arm's end but developed its current form by the mid-1600s.

English term or phrase: "at arms' length" Loans and Guarantees – No employee or officer (or their immediate family member) may accept loans or guarantees of obligations (except from banks of other entities that provide such services in the normal course and at arms’ length) from any individual, organization or entity doing or seeking to do business with the Company.



David L.

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Nov 7, 2007
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arm's length transaction Definition | Business Dictionaries from AllBusiness.com

Business Definition for: arm's length transaction
Dictionary of Accounting Terms
arm's length transaction
one entered into by unrelated parties, each acting in their own best interest. It is assumed that in this type of transaction the prices used are the fair market values of the property or services being transferred in the transaction.
Dictionary of Finance and Investment Terms
arm's length transaction
transaction that is conducted as though the parties were unrelated, thus avoiding any semblance of conflict of interest. For example, under current law parents may rent real estate to their children and still claim business deductions such as depreciation as long as the parents charge their children what they would charge if someone who is not a relative were to rent the same property.
Dictionary of Banking Terms
arm's length transaction
transaction carried out by unrelated or unaffiliated parties, as by a willing buyer and a willing seller, each acting in his own self-interest. Pricing based on such transactions is the basis of fair market valuations.
Dictionary of Real Estate Terms
arm's length transaction
a transaction among parties, each of whom acts in his or her own best interest.
Examples: Transactions between the following parties would, in most cases, NOT be considered arm's length:
0. a husband and wife
0. a father and son
0. a corporation and one of its subsidiaries
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