Statistics Dictionary

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Y Intercept

For a line in a Cartesian coordinate system, the y intercept is the value of y when x equals zero.

The chart below shows three lines plotted in an XY coordinate system. The y intercept is 2 for the red line, 0 for the green line, and -2 for the blue line.

In the equation for a straight line, shown below, the y intercept is one of the key parameters:

y = mx + b

where m is the slope of the line, b is the y intercept of the line, x is the independent variable, and y is the dependent variable.