Definition of trade on in English:

trade on

phrasal verb

  • Take advantage of (something), especially in an unfair way.

    ‘the government is trading on fears of inflation’
    • ‘It was a small company trading on the small capitalisation market of the NASDAQ Index.’
    • ‘But trading on his strong economic background, he doesn't have to work as hard to win over his audience.’
    • ‘They do this by trading on a phenomenon once neatly summarised by the great economist JK Galbraith.’
    • ‘She has now concluded that the Gallery used her, trading on the publicity she generates wherever she goes but never intending her to win.’
    • ‘There is no excuse for foot-dragging, no excuse for trading on the patience of his party, the country or his successor.’
    • ‘A mainstream show, trading on sex and violence, but without an ounce of nudity or edginess.’
    • ‘They are also accused of trading on cultural stereotypes and of lacking any real substance.’
    • ‘I think it is trading on people's weaknesses and will lead to more and more depravity.’
    • ‘He is only trying to get you to feel sorry for him, trading on the grief and despair of others.’
    • ‘He may be trading on past glories but he can still fetch a good price for them.’
    exploit, take advantage of, capitalize on, profit from, use, make use of
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