be in dire straits

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be in dire straits

To be in a very bleak or grim situation. All of those recent layoffs indicate that the company is in dire straits. I was in dire straits there for a while, but I'm feeling much better after my hospital stay.
See also: dire, strait
References in periodicals archive ?
Just now he is in Dire Straits and has admitted it's all been Money for Nothing.
It stated that British Airways is in dire straits, sacking staff, including pilots, bosses asking staff to work for nothing, owing to a lack of bookings and loss of passengers.
This once Great Britain is in dire straits - shame on all you greedy selfindulgent horrors.
There is no doubt the sturgeon, an ancient fish that can live up to 100 years and weigh more than a ton, is in dire straits. Years of over-fishing have depleted the population.
"Two species of fish are hanging by a thread, and the fishing industry is in dire straits," says Francis Eatherington, a 20-year forestry worker.
Howard Archer, chief economist for Global Insight, said: "The manufacturing sector is in dire straits. And it seems certain it will see sharp contraction for some time."