contract out (of)

1. To contract out something (or contract something out) is to arrange for another company to do some work instead of your company.
Examples of use:
a) We are contracting out our web design service to a local web designer.
b) Our government has contracted out hospital cleaning services to the private sector.
c) News headline: Toronto votes to contract out garbage pickup.
d) They have voted to contract their garbage collection out to private companies.

2. To contract out of something is to decide not to be included in an official plan or scheme. British English.
Examples of use:
a) I have contracted out of the company pension plan.
b) You can contract out of the state pension scheme.

close down

To close down something (or close something down), e.g. a business or factory, is to close it permanently so that it stops doing business.
Examples of use:
a) The shop was losing money so we closed it down.
b) The bookshop has closed down.
c) He is unemployed because the factory where he worked has closed down.

cash up

To cash up is to count all the money taken by a shop or business at the end of the working day. UK and Australian English.
Examples of use:
1. We haven’t had a customer for an hour. Let’s cash up and go home.
2. He trusts her to cash up every night.
3. When we cashed up we realised we’d had our best day ever in the shop!
4. I hate cashing up before I go home at night. It takes so long!

cash in on

To cash in on something is to benefit or make money from an event or situation, often in an unfair way.
Examples of use:
a) BBC News headline: Israelis cash in on Kosher wine trade.
b) Some Londoners cashed in on the Royal Wedding by renting out their homes.
c) Times Online headline: Investors cash in on BP crisis.
d) Airline companies are cashing in on the demand for cheap flights.

call back

1. If you call back somebody (or call somebody back) you telephone someone who rang you earlier, or you telephone someone for a second time.
Examples of use:
a) Mr Evans while you were out: he wants you to call him back.
b) He forgot to book a double room, so he had to call the hotel back.
2. To call back is to return to a place to see somebody again.
Examples of use:
a) I’m sorry, Mrs Bottone is in a meeting. Can you call back this afternoon?

burn out

To burn out is to become extremely tired or ill because of too much work or stress.
Examples of use:
a) You’ll burn out if you keep working such long hours without a holiday.
b) He burned himself out because he worked too hard.
c) She had a very stressful job and was burnt out within a year.

bring off

To bring off something (or bring something off) is to succeed in achieving something difficult.
Examples of use:
a) Your new Manager has promised to increase turnover by 40%. Do you really think he can bring it off?
b) They successfully brought off their plans to relocate the company to Malaysia.
c) We need to increase our profits by 20% by April 2012. I’m not sure we can bring it off.