Cliche of the Week 126 – Belt tightening

May 18, 2013 at 4:34 pm Leave a comment

Belt tightening is out of favour in Australia, at least until after the federal election, but the rest of the world continues to suck in stomachs and place fat budgets on subsistence diets.

The phrase is being used across the world in news reports up to 1,400 times per month compared to about 500 two years ago.

This standard attempt to describe fiscal rigour mostly appears in the USA followed by business reporting about Europe.

“The world’s biggest clothing group, Spain’s Inditex which controls the Zara brand, posted Wednesday a record 2012 net profit as strong sales abroad, especially in Asia, and a global expansion offset belt-tightening by its domestic consumers.” (Agence France-Presse, March 13)

“Wellington has been hit by Government belt-tightening, with official unemployment hitting 7.9 per cent in the region, the highest level since 1994.” (Dominion Post, March 9)

“The firm’s (Goldman) most recent partner class was the smallest since before the initial public offering, a sign of belt-tightening.” (Wall Street Journal, March 8)

“General belt-tightening, followed by more belt-tightening with sequestration, is forcing the nation’s multibillion-dollar nuclear weapons complex to realize that the free-spending days of the Cold War are over.”(Press Democrat, March 5)

Chris Pash’s book, The Last Whale , a true story set in the 1970s about Australia’s last whaling station and the activists who fought to close it, was published by Fremantle Press in 2008.

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