Welcome to English in a Minute.
Have you ever been shopping and heard someone say: I don't want to break the bank.
This is a simple phrase that you can easily add to your American English vocabulary.
Let's hear it in a conversation.
A: I wanted to buy a new car. I saw one at the dealership yesterday, but it was so expensive!
B: How expensive?
A: very expensive -- way too much for me. I can't afford it, and I don't want to break the bank.
This phrase means to use up all of your money, and it comes from gambling. If a gambler wins more money than the casino has on hand, it's called "breaking the bank." And when someone has no money, you can say he is "broke."
And that's English in a Minute.