the possessive of U.S.?

Friday, February 20, 2009

We came across this one on some copy we're editing. Oddly, this has never come up before.

The copywriter had U.S.'

But that looks really weird, doesn't it? U.S.'s seems much more right.

So we checked the style guide, and here's what they said:

Possessives of abbreviations are formed like those of nouns that are spelled out. The singular possessive is formed by adding -'s; the plural possessive, by adding an apostrophe only.

Since "U.S." stands for "United States," we go with the plural possessive, which is, in fact, U.S.'