# Thread: Past Tense and Present Tense Combination

1. ## Past Tense and Present Tense Combination

Hi,

I have encountered the following sentence in a news article.

The common denominator of the financial crisis, analysts said, IS the bursting of the housing bubble.

it is a past tense. So I am expecting WAS. Could you please explain why IS is used?

Thanks,
Ravi

2. ## Re: Past Tense and Present Tense Combination

Originally Posted by ravikumarkargam
Hi,

I have encountered the following sentence in a news article.

The common denominator of the financial crisis, analysts said, IS the bursting of the housing bubble.

it is a past tense. So I am expecting WAS. Could you please explain why IS is used?

Thanks,
Ravi
Remove the bracketed (past tense) section

The common denominator of the financial crisis IS the bursting of the housing bubble.

This is a general fact which is relevant to the present - if it were no longer relevant or true (at the time of writing), the past tense would have been used.

analyists said

This past tense (embedded section) indicates when the fact was stated - and indicates that is was stated at a specific point in the past.

I am not a teacher.

3. ## Re: Past Tense and Present Tense Combination

Originally Posted by ravikumarkargam
Hi,

I have encountered the following sentence in a news article.

The common denominator of the financial crisis, analysts said, IS the bursting of the housing bubble.

it is a past tense. So I am expecting WAS. Could you please explain why IS is used?

Thanks,
Ravi
The financial crisis is certainly still with us, even if the housing bubble burst last year. But it's irrelevant (to the tense) when the burst took place.
"The common denominator of the financial crisis, analysts said, is the 2007 bursting of the housing bubble."
(Though I thought you needed two things to have a common denominator).
"The common denominator of the financial crisis and the high rate of mortgage repayment defaults, analysts said, is the 2007 bursting of the housing bubble."

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