Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For August 03, 2008

Percentage of men who said they would stay in a relationship where their partner had substantial credit card debt or had filed for bankruptcy, according to a nationwide survey from 87

Percentage of women who said the same: 80

Percentage of men and women who claim they have never kept financial secrets from someone they are dating: 66.5


Percentage of workers who say they stay in contact with work while on vacation, according to a survey conducted by CareerBuilder: 25

Percentage who say their bosses expect them to be working or at least checking voicemail and e-mail while on vacation: 9

Percentage who say they gave up vacation days in 2007 because they didn't have time to use them: 15


Percentage of consumers who say they plan to stay home more in an economic downturn, according to the results of a survey conducted by e-Rewards on behalf of Blockbuster Inc.: 88

Ranks of eating out, attending entertainment events like concerts and plays, taking vacations, seeing movies in the theater and going to the mall as the most likely candidates for budget cuts: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Source: Blockbuster.

Percentage of senior-level executives who say they would accept a pay cut for the "right" position -- defined as a position in which they are learning, positively impacting their organization and co-workers and growing professionally -- according to a survey conducted by IMPACT Hiring Solutions: 54

Percentage who would take up to an 18 percent pay cut: 38

Source: IMPACT Hiring Solutions.

Percentage of U.S. executives who say they are willing to sacrifice at least 1 percent of their salaries to fund their companies' "green" initiatives, according to a survey conducted by Korn/Ferry International: 73

Percentage who say they would be willing to forgo 1 to 2 percent: 40

Percentage who say they would be willing to forgo 10 percent or more: 3

Source: Korn/Ferry International.

When asked to name the most important financial problem facing their families today, percentage of Americans who say energy and gas prices, according to a Gallup Poll: 29

Percentage who cite the high cost of living and inflation: 18

Percentage who say a lack of money and low wages: 14

Percentage who say health care costs: 9

Source: Gallup.

Despite the growing availability of other formats for reading -- such as online or with an e-book reader or PDA -- percentage of readers who still like to read the old-fashioned way and curl up with a printed book, according to a Random House/Zogby poll: 82

Percentage of respondents who said they are comfortable reading books in other formats, such as online or with an e-book reader or PDA: 11

Source: Zogby International.

Amount of money needed annually to eradicate world hunger, re-launch agriculture and avert future threats of conflicts over food, according to Director-General Jacques Diouf of the U.N.'s Food and Agriculture Organization: $30 billion

Estimated number of hungry people this money would allow to enjoy the right to food: 862 million

Amount of money spent on arms in 2006: $1.204 trillion

Source: FAO.

Value of the beauty product market in 2007, according to a report, The U.S. Cosmeceuticals Market, from Packaged Facts: $16 billion

Projected value of the market by 2012: $21 billion

Value of skin-care products alone in 2007: $8.9 billion

Source: Packaged Facts.

Rank of Caladesi Island State Park in the Dunedin/Clearwater, Fla., area on the list of America's Top Beaches for 2008, according to coastal expert Dr. Stephen Leatherman, aka "Dr. Beach": 1

Ranks of Hanalei Beach (Kauai, Hawaii) and Siesta Beach (Sarasota, Fla.) on the list: 2, 3


Idle Thought

"People like to imagine that because all our mechanical equipment moves so much faster, that we are thinking faster, too." -- Christopher Morley, writer

(Readers can contact John MacIntyre at johnmacintyre(at)

4520 Main St., Kansas City, Mo. 64111; (816) 932-6600