In particular, it is supposed that the Federal budget will provide over 800 millions of rubles for the completion of plant's technical re-equipment.

If it is to be supposed that the stock market crashes soon, then . . .

1 Answer 1


First of all, "is" is present tense. It implies that something is happening now. "Is to be" is actually a form of future tense. It implies that something is not actually happening now, but will be happening at some point in the future, and specifically it usually means that it will be happening in the future as a result of some deliberate plan or intent (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Going-to_future#The_be_+_to_construction).

For an adjective like "supposed" this can get a little fuzzy, but for example let's compare:

Her party is spectacular!


Her party is to be spectacular!

The first sentence is what you would say if the party is going on right now (and it's spectacular), whereas the second sentence suggests that the party is still coming up in the future, but when it happens it is planned that it will be spectacular.

Now, getting back to your examples, they are complicated a bit by the fact that one of your sentences is a simple statement, and the other is actually hypothetical or conditional, so they're not really equivalent sentences.

it is supposed that the federal budget ...

means pretty much what it says: Somebody (unspecified) is currently supposing something about the federal budget, but:

If it is to be supposed that the stock market ...

is something of an unusual case. This is a conditional ("if") phrase. In these situations, usually in English the conditional would use the past tense, like so:

If it were supposed that the stock market ...

However, when somebody is proposing a hypothetical argument (i.e. "please consider this for a moment as if it were true"), the conditional is more commonly done using the present tense instead:

If it is supposed that the stock market ...

But if the speaker wishes to emphasize that this hypothetical we're intended to be supposing is, perhaps, unlikely, or something that somebody else would want us to do (but not necessarily the speaker), they may use the "is to be" future form:

Some people want us to believe that the stock market is in trouble. If it is to be supposed that the stock market crashes soon, then what would this mean for the economy?

(this implies something of a feeling of "I don't really believe this, but let's pretend what they want us to believe for a moment and consider what it means")

  • Dear Foogod, Thank you very much! Sep 8, 2019 at 20:00
  • Not necessarily future. “The sky is falling, if Chicken Little is to be believed,” i.e. if Chicken Little is credible. In general X is to be verbed can be indirectly imperative, rather than future. Oct 11, 2019 at 1:10
  • Well, the verb form is still technically a future form. You are correct, though, that in general, future forms are sometimes used as implied imperatives ("This report is to be completed by tonight.", or "You will get it done, do you understand?"). This is not limited to the "is to be" form, but actually can technically be done with any future form. This is, however, probably where the "if ... is to be" meaning actually evolved from originally, so it is a good point to mention.
    – Foogod
    Oct 13, 2019 at 17:22

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