red cent, not worth/don't have a

not have a red cent

To be extremely poor; to have very little or no money to spend. During college, when I didn't have a red cent, I survived off of ramen noodles for months at a time. They used to be so well off, but the economy crashed and their business closed, and they don't have a red cent anymore.
See also: cent, have, not, red

not worth a red cent

Worthless. I don't know how I'm going to tell that woman that her prized collectibles are not worth a red cent.
See also: cent, not, red, worth
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

red cent, not worth/don't have a

Worthless; bankrupt or broke. The cent has long been the lowest denomination of American coin, and “red” refers to the fact that it used to be made of copper. The expression dates from the early nineteenth century. J. S. Jones used it in People’s Lawyer (ca. 1839): “It would not have cost you a red cent.”
See also: have, not, red, worth
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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