Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An alloy of gold or silver with a greater proportion of another metal, such as copper, used in making coins.
  • n. An alloy of silver with a high percentage of copper, used in making medals and tokens.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of several alloys of precious metals and base metals that is used (where legal) to make coins, medals etc.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An alloy of gold and silver with a large proportion of copper or other base metal, used in coinage.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Gold or silver alloyed with copper in large proportions, so as to make a base metal.
  • n. Coin struck from an alloy over half copper.

Etymologies

French, from Old French, ingot, from bille, log; see billet2.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • By the end of our first year in office, the economy was beginning to recover and by our second budget, for fiscal 1979, we had cut the federal deficit almost by half, to $40 billon.

    The Good Fight

  • The lender's banking unit did get a boost from Student Loan Corp. and saw total loans up 5% to $52.5 billon.

    Discover to Buy Citi Student Loan Portfolio

  • Spending on personal consumption, health care, education, mass transit, and construction for home weatherization and infrastructure repair all were found to create more jobs per $1 billon in expenditures than military spending does.

    Ellen Brown: The Military as a Jobs Program: There Are More Efficient Ways to Stimulate an Economy

  • India's largest power producer by capacity posted a provisional net profit of 25.05 billion rupees $565 million in the January-March period, compared with 20.17 billon rupees a year earlier.

    NTPC Provisional Profit Rises 24%

  • However, Lu Ting , an economist at Bank of America Corp.'s Merrill Lynch unit, believes that about $34 billon might have exited in the third quarter of last year.

    China's Forex Reserves Decline

  • The passage in December 2010 established the World Trade Center Health Program and ensured $2.7 billon in funding to treat medical ailments of eligible first responders.

    Volunteers stand resolute on the 10th anniversary of 9/11

  • In the second quarter Ford retired $7 billon in debt, using profit generated by its North American operations and credit arm.

    Ford's Drive to Ditch 'Junk'

  • "The market is likely to be under pressure this week amid tight liquidity conditions as Sinopec is set to sell CNY23 billon worth of bonds on Wednesday, and also as the hike in banks' reserve requirement ratio will take effect Thursday," said Li Xin, an analyst at China Development Bank Securities.

    Asian Shares Fall on Mideast Pressure, New Zealand Quake

  • It also will offer up to €8.9 billon of Treasury bills at its weekly auction Tuesday, but shorter maturities carry less risk and therefore are considered less of a test.

    Currency Traders Watch Bond Sales

  • The European Banking Authority estimated that the bank needs €3.3 billon $4.4 billion in additional capital to meet its new rule of a 9% core Tier 1 ratio, assuming theoretical write-downs on sovereign-bond holdings.

    Stake Sale Eyed for Italian Bank

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  • A low-grade alloy of silver and other metals (usually copper), used in minor coinage.

    April 21, 2008