What is a good German translation for the verb "to plateau"?

I tried searching around, but it seems that online dictionaries such as dict.cc only recognize Plateau as a noun.

If I wanted to say something like:

Prices have pretty much plateaued.

would it make sense in German to say:

Preise haben eine Hochebene erreicht.

or does that not carry the intended meaning?


The closest one I have found is "sich stabilisieren": Die Preise haben sich stabilisiert.

  • 1
    Tell me if this fits your request. :) – Alenanno May 27 '11 at 18:16
  • I think "to plateau" implies a monotonous stabilisation, wherease "to stabilise" could oscillate around the final value. – Tim May 27 '11 at 19:04
  • @Tim: What do you mean by "monotonous"? By the way, I've proposed "sich stabilisieren" because where I have looked up, it said it was related to Economy and such, so since the question was about "prices" I thought it would be pretty much related. – Alenanno May 27 '11 at 19:07
  • I mean that it is not decreasing, always rising towards the final value. – Tim May 27 '11 at 19:20
  • @Tim: Uhm, isn't plateau just flat, or you mean that although being flat it won't go down anyway? I even thought of "stagnieren" but it had some negative connotation in it, so I left it out but I should have included it. – Alenanno May 27 '11 at 22:01

"Hochebene" sounds wrong in this sentence. It means plateau in the sense of high plane.

A definition of "to plateau" is

to reach a state or level of little or no growth or decline, especially to stop increasing or progressing; remain at a stable level of achievement.

I would translate it this way (I presume you want to emphasize that prices are high):

Die Preise stagnieren auf hohem Niveau.

or just

Die Preise stagnieren.

  • 6
    "stagnieren" is great. – FUZxxl May 27 '11 at 18:30
  • +1, but note that "stagnieren" has a distinctly negative connotation ("stagnant growth") that "plateau" doesn't necessarily carry as I understand it. In many contexts, you want to prefer "sich stabilisieren" – Pekka May 28 '11 at 7:20
  • @Pekka it depends on the economic context. Sure, it's negative for companies if the number of new customers "stagniert" or if a market is saturated. But it's not necessarily true in this case (Financial Times): "Japan: Während andere Länder gegen die Inflation kämpfen, stagnieren auf der Insel die Preise." – splattne May 28 '11 at 7:27
  • @splattne: Would there be such as word as "verplatten," "verebenen," or anything close to them? – Tom Au 0 secs ago edit – Tom Au Jul 15 '11 at 13:28
  • 1
    Isn't it funny that both german and english speaking people use french words, albeit different ones, to express this? – Ingo Sep 12 '11 at 10:25

What about

Die Preise haben einen Höchststand erreicht.


Die Preise haben sich auf einem Höchststand / auf hohem Niveau eingependelt.


  • +1 for eingependelt. – fzwo Nov 16 '11 at 11:26
  • 1
    "haben einen Höchststand erreicht" might be better suited to translating "prices have peaked". – Eugene Seidel Jun 23 '13 at 8:34
  • Dass sie sich eingependelt haben sollte man nur sagen, wenn es wirklich ein Pendeln war. Dass muss beim Verharren auf hohem Niveau nicht sein. – user unknown Jun 23 '13 at 9:34

[Anstieg] ... zum Stillstand kommen

has not yet been mentioned as a way of saying "to plateau" in German.

Thus, for

Prices have pretty much plateaued.


Der Preisanstieg ist so gut wie* zum Stillstand gekommen.

*so gut wie is equivalent to "pretty much".

Note the difference between zum Stillstand kommen and the previous three answers

(1) sich stabilisieren (2) stagnieren (3) auf hohem Niveau einpendeln

The first two do not state whether prices had been rising (inflation) or declining (deflation), the third one sort of does. Sometimes, though, you want to be more explicit, and then Anstieg plus zum Stillstand kommen can be a good choice. (If prices had been falling, you would use Rückgang plus zum Stillstand kommen instead.)

  • M.E. drückt das zum Stillstand kommen des Anstiegs noch nicht aus, dass der Graph der Preise nun seit einiger Zeit seitwärts geht, nachdem es zuvor in welcher Bewegung, etwa pendelnd oder nicht, aufwärts ging, sondern es drückt aus, dass der Anstieg erst kürzlich stoppte. Der Preis kann auch kurz auf hohem Niveau verharren, und dann wieder sinken - dann wäre der Anstieg auch zum Stillstand gekommen. – user unknown Jun 23 '13 at 9:43
  • @userunknown Stimmt. – Eugene Seidel Jun 23 '13 at 16:07
  • @userunknown Mathematisch gesehen passt das aber schon, denn mit Anstieg wird die Veränderung bezeichnet. Der Abfall des Preises ist somit ein negativer Anstieg. In einem technischen / mathematischen Kontext ist diese Übersetzung IMHO ganz ok. – Londane Dec 4 '13 at 16:54

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