The economic crisis in East Asia in 1997-- as the savings and loan debacle in the US, which cost taxpayer billions and billions of dollars, had done a decade earlier-- brought home the importance of financial market regulation.
I wonder whether
1) "as" can be replaced by "so"
as the savings and loan.....
so the savings and loan....
2) billions and billions means US$ 1,000,000
Thank you for your time.
Compare the original sentence to these:
"Mary -- as Michael had done before her -- went to university."
"The Iraq war -- as the Vietnam war did decades earlier -- is causing a drain on America's resources."
You can't replace 'as' with 'so' in these sentences.
In BrE nowadays I always assume that a billion is a thousand million.Generally these days, a a billion is a thousand million - though a British billion used to be a million million.