VV 28 – Financial English Vocabulary: Bonds (1)

Bonds have been a hot topic in the news recently. But what exactly are bonds and how do they work?

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In this financial English lesson, we’ll explain some of the main ideas and vocabulary, starting with key terms such as yields, coupons, and maturity. Then we’ll get into different types of bonds. And finally we’ll look at how governments use bonds to finance their borrowing needs.

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Business English News 15 – Facebook IPO

The value of ‘likes’ and ‘tags’ grew exponentially when Facebook filed its S-1 papers last month. Facebook will launch an Initial Public Offering (IPO) in May, paving the way for 27-year old founder Mark Zuckerberg, his staff, and even a graffiti artist to become exceptionally wealthy.

This month’s Business English News lesson features lots of great vocabulary for talking about company valuations, growth and social networks. Use the links below to access the free transcript and quizzes for this lesson.

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BEN 13 – The Euro Crisis

BEN Eurozone Crisis

The eurozone was thrown into renewed crisis this month as EU leaders struggled to agree on new stability measures.

As reported by the Guardian, “A world recession has drawn closer after the G20 summit failed to agree to fresh financial help for distressed countries and debt-ridden Italy was forced to agree to IMF monitoring of its austerity program.”

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BEP 146 – Money Idioms (Part 2)

This is the second of a two-part Business English Pod series on idioms related to money.

Many of our day-to-day business transactions involve money, so it’s common to hear money idioms used frequently in business discussions. We use them to talk about handling money and to describe situations with lots of money or no money at all. But we also use them to talk about situations that have nothing to do with money – such as evaluating ideas or speculating on their impact.

In the last episode, we met Kevin and Leah, two employees at a cosmetics company. They’re planning a promotional campaign on a small budget. So they’re brainstorming ideas that will spark customer interest at a reasonable cost.

Now, they’re thinking of ways to show that their company’s cosmetics line is good value for money-conscious consumers.

Listening Questions

1. What idea does Kevin suggest at the beginning of the dialog?
2. What are two things the company will have to do if it accepts Kevin’s idea?
3. What are Leah’s concerns about the idea?

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BEP 145 – Money Idioms (Part 1)

This is the first of a two-part Business English Pod series on idioms related to money.

It’s difficult to imagine business without money. After all, making money is the main goal of many businesses. Profits often determine a company’s success. And companies must spend money, and budget carefully, to reach their business goals. So, it’s not surprising money idioms are featured regularly in business conversations.

We’ll be covering many of these idioms today. Take note of them as you hear the dialog, but don’t worry if you don’t understand them the first time around. They’ll all be explained in the debrief and you’ll have a chance to practice them at the end.

We’ll be listening to Kevin and Leah, two colleagues at a mid-sized cosmetics company. Cosmetics is the industry name for make-up – products used to enhance a person’s appearance, such as mascara or eye shadow. They are discussing promotional plans for the coming year while working on a tight budget, so there isn’t much money to spend. Kevin and Leah don’t agree on the best way to spend the money and must find a compromise.

Listening Questions

1. What promotional plan does Kevin suggest?
2. Does Leah agree with this idea? Why or why not?
3. What does Kevin think the company needs to show?

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