idle threat

idle threat

noun deficient threat, empty threat, harmless threat, ineffectual threat, meaningless threat, menacing, mere notice, mere talking, mere warning, only words, subtle intimidation, testing, trial balloon, veiled threat
References in periodicals archive ?
Football League chief executive Richard Harvey said the new directives were not just an idle threat.
Chris Higgins "His 'furious retribution' is an idle threat to deter anyone from protesting against them.
IDLE THREAT Jose fears a lack of big buys may be costly
On Europe it is no idle threat when multinationals, such as Nissan and Honda say they would be deterred from investing in the UK if any referendum took us out of the EU.
It was an idle threat but sufficient to put off the buyer.
they ask, offering a mostly idle threat to perform mischief on the homeowners if no treat is given.
They initially refused, but when I threatened them with the small claims court they paid up because they knew it was not an idle threat.
Deval Patrick said Friday it was no idle threat when he declared he would have to cut up to 2,000 state jobs if workers don't agree to wage concessions.
Although there appears to be a feeling at Betfair that talks of a boycott may be something of an idle threat, the Racing Post has learned that a number of the biggest in-running punters on horseracing at one of London's betting exchange shops will be eschewing Betfair today.
Lenders will no doubt resist moves to rein in their runaway fees but this seems to be no idle threat either - if they do not comply with this, they face investigation by the Financial Services Authority.
It was hardly an idle threat, as politicians have seats on ARD's board, but Wickert managed to save his neck with a public apology.