Reviewed by Aug 16, 2023| Updated on
The term 'Yard' in finance refers to one billion. The origin of the term is 'milliard' from European languages, which is equal to one billion in American English. For example, a person purchasing an item for one billion U.S. dollars is said to be purchasing it for a yard of U.S. dollars. A billion in numerical terms is number 1, followed by nine zeroes.
The term yard can be seen as a financial jargon or a financial slang. It is one of the concise ways to refer to one billion dollars. It helps in clearing the confusion in using the terms' million', 'billion', and 'trillion'.
The term finds a general use in currency trading. Traders in financial markets have their own slang to facilitate trading. The slang terms make trading easier, especially during the early days when traders used to shout to one another and communicate through open outcry. They also used hand signals to pass on information on the buy and sell orders.
Later, traders shifted from the open outcry system to electronic trading. The outcry system was eliminated after adopting a fully integrated electronic trading system, such as those in the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) in India, London Stock Exchange (LSE), and Toronto Stock Exchange (TSE).
Different countries across the world use different terms to help identify large values. For example, certain countries call one billion as one yard, while the others call it milliard or one thousand million. Certain other common financial terms include the cable which refers to the pairing of currencies between the British pound and the U.S. dollar.
Even after adopting a fully integrated electronic trading system, traders continue to use the terms' Yard' and 'Cable'. Electronic and phone trading is slowing, killing the financial slang terms used earlier. This is because the new traders are educated to use modern technology and unaware of the old financial trading terms. The terms are not so frequently used as traders did in the early days of trading.