Monday, 11 January 2010

So just how much is that?

Her Majesty keeping an eye on the numbers

Here's an interesting British English/American English difference that if you are a high powered banker could get you into trouble.

British English: Billion = a million million (in US trillion)
American English: Billion = a thousand million
British English: Trillion = a billion billion
American English: Trillion = a thousand billion

So I will be putting my trillion into a British bank, because otherwise it might end up less than it ought to be. ;)


  1. Did you know that in English English, a thousand million is a milliard?

  2. It's quite an obscure term isn't it? But at great one at that. Much more entertaining than 'thousand million'.

    The term is alive and well in Germany and France at least. I think that Britain is using the American system more and more though.

    There ought to be an official statement from the banks! I mean me and my stockbroker could be talking about totally different amounts of money! ;)

    I don't really have a stockbroker...