Join 3,559 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Billions and billions
January 15, 2010 9:07 AM   Subscribe

Given that Federal bailout monies are being tossed around to banks like sacks of rice from an aid truck, are there any emergent slang terms for one billion dollars?

For $100, there's Benjamin, C-Note; $1000 has many nicknames like "large" "g", etc. $1 Million has "mil". Googling for "slang for billion" only nets a somewhat obscure British usage of "quid", but that seems unsatisfactory since 1)quid already refers to Pound, 2)it's not particularly American sounding, 3)billion deserves it's own special lucrative lucre slang term. Are Wall Street, defense contractor, or politician types using one or more accepted slang terms for a billion USD?
posted by Burhanistan to Society & Culture (14 answers total)
 
A yard
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 9:13 AM on January 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Not exactly a slang term but I've heard people say "billion dollars" in a Dr. Evil voice that certainly reflects pop culture in a similar way.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 9:15 AM on January 15, 2010


Huh. I missed yard in the results. Any others that financial insiders like to use?
posted by Burhanistan at 9:16 AM on January 15, 2010


I vote for "Rockefeller" since he was the world's first billionaire, and since it's consistent with the Benjamins theme.
posted by Askr at 9:17 AM on January 15, 2010


It's not short, but I sometimes say "billion with a 'G'" when I'm discussing quantities in that range and want to emphasize how large they are. I do like "yard" quite a lot, though.
posted by tellumo at 9:17 AM on January 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


I vote for "Rockefeller"

Well, I'm not really up for brainstorming new names, just curious about existing usage "in the field".
posted by Burhanistan at 9:18 AM on January 15, 2010


Guess for origin of term: Yard = 3 feet, a billion has 3 sets of 3 zeros?
posted by leotrotsky at 9:19 AM on January 15, 2010


Or you could check the link provided above: "The term also refers to "milliard," which is a European term for 1,000 million (a billion). "
posted by Grither at 9:25 AM on January 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


People who use "milliard" to mean 1,000 million use the term "billion" to mean a million million (what Americans and younger British people would call "trillion"). So you to be unambiguous, you probably want to avoid the use of "billion."
posted by grouse at 9:31 AM on January 15, 2010


Financial, but not spoken: MMM
posted by jckll at 9:42 AM on January 15, 2010


अरब! Arawb
posted by FuManchu at 10:01 AM on January 15, 2010


This doesn't answer your question, but traders call a million a buck.
posted by defreckled at 10:42 AM on January 15, 2010


With all due apologies, a Barack? Or a 'Bama?
posted by gjc at 5:55 PM on January 15, 2010


Yeah, "yard" is probably what you're looking for.

Also possibly interesting: the market slang for 100,000 of something is a lac (misspellings and all). This one mostly comes from gold traders.
posted by The Shiny Thing at 5:32 PM on January 16, 2010


« Older I installed a custom ROM on my...   |  Weird situation to be in: I am... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.