Figuratively Speaking For January 12, 2018

Percentage of Americans who said they overspent this past holiday season, according to WalletHub's post-holiday shopping season survey, as well as its Credit Card Return Protection Report: 29

Percentage who say they plan to spend less in 2018 than they did in 2017: 62

Source: WalletHub.

Percentage rise in consumer credit card balances in November 2016 -- to a new all-time high of $1.0227 trillion -- according to an announcement by The Federal Reserve: 13

Source: Bankrate.com.

Percentage of HR managers who said they take thank-you notes into account when deciding whom to hire, according to an Accountemps survey: 80

Percentage of candidates who send thank-you notes: 24

Source: Accountemps.

Percentage of current owners of Amazon Echo and Google Home smart speakers who are planning to buy another smart speaker within the next six months, according to research from Strategy Analytics: 69

Percentage of all smart speakers in use that are either Amazon or Google: 94

Source: Strategy Analytics.

Percentage of Americans who will be prioritizing healthy or socially conscious food purchases in 2018, according to a survey for Label Insight: 67

Percentage of consumers who are planning to eat less sugar or buy more "no sugar added" products this year: 47

Percentage who will emphasize natural ingredient purchases, such as those with no artificial colors or flavors: 37

Source: Wakefield Research.

Percentage of all U.S. respondents who said they would prioritize spending spare change on experiences rather than products, according to the results of a multigenerational travel study exploring consumer behavior and travel preferences of American adults from Generation Z (ages 18 to 22) to baby boomers (ages 55 to 65):74

Percentage of millennials who disclosed that they are currently saving money to spend specifically on travel: 65

Percentage of Generation Z respondents who said they have stayed at a specific hotel or destination in order to score a positive response from followers of posts on their own social media channels: 20

Source: Expedia.

Percentage of workers who said winter weather negatively impacts their mood and happiness at work, according to a survey from staffing firm Accountemps: 38

Percentage who cited January as the least-happy month at work for them: 26

Rank of "Blue Monday" (Jan. 15th) on the official list of the gloomiest days of the year: 1

Ranks of Pittsburgh, Detroit, Cleveland, Chicago and Boston on the list of cities where workers give winter a thumbs-down: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Ranks of Phoenix, San Diego and Miami, Austin, and Houston, Los Angeles and Dallas on the list of cities where workers give winter a thumbs-up: 1, 2 (tie) 4, 5 (3-way tie)

Source: Accountemps.

When professionals were asked what would aggravate them most during the recruiting process, percentage who cited not hearing back from the recruiter or hiring manager, according to a survey conducted by Korn Ferry: 53

Percentage who do not believe recruiters paint a clear, accurate picture of the company and of the role for which they are being considered: 47

Percentage who do not believe that the recruiters give them the tools and tips they need to land a job: 36

Source: Korn/Ferry International.

Ranks of DASH Diet, Mediterranean Diet and Flexitarian Diet on the list of the best overall diets, according to research by U.S. News & World Report: 1, 2 (tie)

Ranks of Mediterranean Diet, Flexitarian Diet and Weight Watchers on the list of the easiest diets to follow: 1, 2 (tie)

Source: US News & World Report.

Percentage of U.S. broadband households who use voice controls on internet-connected devices, according to research by Parks Associates: 44

Percentage who want the ability to monitor and adjust their thermostat remotely: 49

Percentage who are very interested in having voice control in their vehicles: 40

Source: Parks Associates.

Idle Thought

"When all's said and done, all roads lead to the same end. So it's not so much which road you take, as how you take it." -- Charles de Lint, writer

(Readers can contact John MacIntyre at johnmacintyre@bwr.eastlink.ca.)

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