The best way to remember which to use can be found in this simple statement:
I imply, and you infer.
To imply is to suggest or express something indirectly, usually an idea or action. The recipient infers–that is, comes to a conclusion, opinion, or deduction–after hearing or reading the information. Just remember: the sender (speaker or writer) implies, and the recipient infers.
The manager implied that personnel changes were imminent.
Dave, head of mailing services, inferred that his department would face staff cuts.
Marie inferred that her neck was on the chopping block if she didn’t start selling soon.
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