American English

Definition of billion number from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1(usually plural verb)
  2. 2(abbreviation bn) 1,000,000,000; one thousand million Worldwide sales reached 2.5 billion. half a billion dollars They have spent billions on the problem (= billions of dollars, etc.). You say a, one, two, several, etc. billion without a final “s” on “billion.”Billions (of…) can be used if there is no number or quantity before it. Always use a plural verb with billion or billions, except when a number or an amount of money is mentionedTwo billion (people) worldwide are expected to watch the game.Two billion (dollars) was withdrawn from the account.A billion is 10 to the power of 9.There are more examples of how to use numbers at the entry for hundred.
  3. 3a billion, billions (of…) (informal) a very large amount Our immune systems are killing billions of germs right now.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: billion