His bottom line would have bled black

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Français - France

I stumbled upon this phrase and I can't make sense of it. I looked online but only found medical references that don't make sense here.

My father tsked when I stepped into his large corner office filled with walnut furniture and sweeping views of the slopes.
It was probably one of the nicest views at the resort.
I was surprised he hadn’t made this some swanky room and charged triple for it. People would have paid, and his bottom line would have bled black.
However, as astute of a business man my father was, he could appreciate a damn good view.

I'm guessing it means that, had he made the office into a luxury room, he would have earned a lot of cash for it but the metaphor, if it is one, is very obscure for me.

I would very much appreciate it if native speakers could tell me what they understand here, or if it's a fixed phrase I don't know of.
Many thanks in advance!
  • Chat Perché

    Senior Member
    Français - France
    Bonjour verowyn,
    Bien que non anglaise, j'avance une suggestion ;)
    Il s'agit peut être d'une référence au compte bancaire du père du narrateur, avec un détournement de l'expression 'to be in the red / in the black'.
    Le père ferait tellement de profits si il louait la pièce avec vue que la ligne de balance de son relevé bancaire 'déborderait' de noir.


    Senior Member
    English - Southern England Home Counties
    "bled black" is a strange phrase but obviously (with reference to the bottom account line) it means he COULD (and would) have made good profits but, in spite of being a good business man, he preferred the view from his own office to look so great.

    I would change "bled" to "been" - because black figures don't bleed. :tick: :D #2 and #3


    Senior Member
    Français (CH), AE (California)
    Just a strange reversal of a well-known expression: Bleed red.

    To bleed red is to lose money, because in accounting negative amounts are usually written in red ink (perhaps as an allusion to blood).
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