How do you pronounce percent?

How do you pronounce percent?

How do you pronounce percent?

How do you pronounce percent?

Many of the people who I work with in my accent reduction coaching program mispronounce the work percent. This leads to confusion!

And there’s a simple reason why this happens.


The word percent is stressed on the second syllable. This is because the word came to English via French.

  • perce➝nt


In contrast, the word person is stressed on the first syllable.

This is a very common pattern. In fact, most two syllable nouns are stressed on the first syllable.

  • per➝son


  • per➝son
  • perce➝nt

If you stress these words on the wrong syllable, it will lead to confusion in the ears of the American listener.

Variations of percent

These variations of percent are stressed the same way.

  • perce➝nt        
  • perce➝ntage
  • perce➝ntages

Listen to the pronunciation


Americans listen for stress

Remember that Americans listen for stress. If you stress the wrong syllable in a word, there’s a very good chance that they won’t understand you.

Be aware of and practice American syllable stress patterns. This will make a huge difference in your comprehensibility.

I can show you how

If you’re a non native English speaker wants to speak clear American English, take a free trial lesson by following the link below.

My training programs will teach you how speak American English in a way that your colleagues will respect and understand!

About the author

Susan Ryan is the author of the ConfidentVoice blog and an American English communication and accent reduction coach.