In original sense, a five-cent US coin (a nickel); use for taxis and buses due to these services originally charging five cents as fare. Speculated to originate from Louisiana Creole French jetnée, from French jeton (“token, coin-sized metal disc”).
jitney (plural jitneys)
- A small bus or minibus which typically operates service on a fixed route, sometimes scheduled.
- An unlicensed taxi cab.
- A shared-ride taxi.
- (US, archaic) A small coin, a nickel.
- (in attributive use, US, archaic) Very inexpensive.
- (Canada) An informal lawn bowling or curling competition in which all players present are randomly drawn into teams.
- (Can we clean up(+) this sense?) A fraudulent arrangement whereby a broker who has direct access to an exchange executes trades on behalf of a broker who doesn't.