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  • Subject

    baked in the cake

    baked in the cake
    - US informal Inevitable or unchangeable as a result of previous actions or events:

    - Look out for the next big tax—it is pretty much baked in the cake now.

    - Higher prices for goods and services are already "baked in the cake" and will show up on the retail level well before 2010.

    - The deal appeared to be baked in the cake until the meddlers at a New York fund launched a counter offer.


    Would "ausgemachte Sache" be a good German equivalent? i.e. something is baked in the cake = etwas ist eine ausgemachte Sache.
    Authorpatman2 (527865) 28 Jul 16, 22:14
    unter Dach und Fach sein
    fällt mir noch ein. Dürfte passen.
    #1AuthorBraunbärin (757733) 28 Jul 16, 22:19
    M. E. klingt das etwas zu positiv-optimistisch - passt nicht unbedingt für Steuer- oder Preiserhöhungen (zumindest nicht aus der Perspektive derer, die zahlen müssen) ...

    In Anlehnung an den Vorschlag des OP vielleicht:

    "beschlossene Sache" / "(bereits) so gut wie sicher"

    Oder noch definitiver:

    "so sicher wie das Amen in der Kirche"
    #2AuthorWoody 1 (455616) 28 Jul 16, 22:30

    Another one that's totally new to me -- interesting, thank you.

    Speaking of 'beschlossene Sache,' I came across it, as well as a few other German expressions, looking for the only similar expression I do know: namely, ''to be a done deal.'
    #3Authorhm -- us (236141) 28 Jul 16, 23:03
    The phrase does seems to be often used together with negative financial news, but I don't think it's limited to the negative, despite the choice of examples in Oxfordonline. If the book Idioms in the News (by Peter Bengelsdorf) can be believed:

    Baked in the cake means already included in calculations. Often shortened to baked in, this expression is usually used in financial contexts.

    The origin may be a comment by Walter Wriston, chairman of Citicorp, in 1978. He predicted a recession in 1980 and added, "It's baked in the cake."

    As seen in the Idioms book, the original phrase was indeed used for negative financial news. Also, most examples in the various corpora at have a financial theme, often negative. I did find one entry from The New Yorker with a political theme and using a sports analogy:

    " After forty years of Jets rooting (and a bit of Giants hating—it’s baked in the cake, as rooting against Man U is for those who root for Man City) this is hard to take. "

    I like the Amen in der Kirche phrase. And Unter Dach und Fach might fit in some contexts.

    Edit: Oh, and there's more info from hm -- us. Thanks!

    #4Authorpatman2 (527865) 28 Jul 16, 23:10
    Looking back at the examples in the OP, maybe only the 3rd is really like 'a done deal.'

    The other two, which may actually be more typical, seem to mean something more like 'a fixed part of the package / the bargain.' But I can't think of any other paraphrases for that at the moment.
    #5Authorhm -- us (236141) 28 Jul 16, 23:47
    I've always used "baked in the cake" to describe something that is a foregone conclusion. I didn't know until about an hour ago that it had its origins in the financial world and that most of its use is also in that sector.

    Using the image of baking a cake: the final cake will be a result of the things put into the batter before it goes into the oven. Once something is added, it cannot be removed and will inevitably be part of the final result. And once the cake is in the oven, there's no changing the mixture. In the financial, political and societal realms, the process of what is "added to the cake" is mostly outside one's control.

    I read through all the links in # 3. Done deal may fit in some contexts but often there is no two-party agreement in something that is baked in the cake so the image of a deal doesn't fit.

    #6Authorpatman2 (527865) 29 Jul 16, 00:16
    Could the idiom "Die Weichen sind gestellt" be used to convey a similar sense of an action or actions that will lead to an inevitable outcome?
    #7Authorpatman2 (527865) 30 Jul 16, 20:32
    #8Authormbshu (874725) 30 Jul 16, 22:42
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