Does it have any special meaning here or just mean "a lot"? Is the period before "By a lot" correct?

"Is Hillary more powerful than Trump? That isn’t the right way to look at it. Hillary was just a candidate at the time. Trump is actually president. But the market ignored Trump and listened to Hillary. The market believes that Hillary’s threat was more credible than Trump’s. By a lot."


2 Answers 2


"Hillary's threat was more credible by a lot" has the same meaning as "Hillary's threat was a lot more credible".

"A lot" is a quantifier which makes things "bigger". Here, it refers to credibility as if it were measurable. It says that Hillary's threat to the American drug market was more credible and had greater implications. It then gives "the difference in credibility", or how-much-more-credible-it-is, as being very big.

So to clear it up again: "By a lot" is a quantifier applying to credibility.

Note that "By a lot." can be a sentence on its own, but is not grammatical. It is used to replicate that pause in spoken word caused by finishing a sentence and then adding more detail in another poorly formed sentence. "It is more credible. by a lot."


It means that "Hillary’s threat was many times more credible than Trump's".

We use by to talk about measurements, and increases and decreases in amounts:

  • By how much more than Trump's was Hillary's threat credible? - By a lot.

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