Journey in Life: 03/18/14

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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

"House of cards" nghĩa là gì?

Hitler's house of cards. Photo courtesy Smabs Sputzer.

'House of cards' (shared via VOA) có nghĩa là một kế hoạch bấp bênh, hay một tình thế có nguy cơ thất bại, sụp đổ.

Ví dụ
Our town is in a dangerous situation. We listened to developers (nhà khai thác đất đai). And now we've invested (đầu tư) too heavily in hotels and shopping centers that aren't attracting enough visitors. There's too much debt (mắc nợ quá nhiều). It's a house of cards that could easily fall apart (sụp đổ dễ dàng).

Ever since I was young, I dreamed of owning (làm chủ) an apartment in New York City. My parents assumed that I would fail to make it happen. To them it was just another house of cards (kế hoạch bấp bênh). But I surprised (ngạc nhiên) them. After several years of hard work, I managed to buy my own place in that expensive city.

But the exuberance (hồ hời) of the moment masked (ẩn giấu) the underlying risk. Together, the global pool of cash, easy monetary policy, booming housing market, insatiable (vô độ) appetite for mortgage-backed assets (tài sản đảm bảo bằng thế chấp), complexity of Wall Street financial engineering (thủ thuật), and leverage (đòn bẩy) of financial institutions created a house of cards. This precarious structure was fated to collapse as soon as the underlying card—the nonstop growth of housing prices—was pulled out.

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