Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For April 12, 2009

Percentage of moms who say their children think that money "grows on trees," according to a survey by Mom Central: 24

Percentage of moms who indicated that trying to save money was a significant stressor: 66

Source: Mom Central Inc.

Percentage of hourly hiring managers with responsibility to recruit summer employees who are most looking for eagerness to have the job and a positive attitude in their seasonal employees, according to an Ipsos Public Affairs poll conducted on behalf of SnagAJob.com: 36

Percentage who are most looking for someone who has the ability to work the daily schedule they need: 27

Percentage who are looking for previous experience in the industry, with the company or that particular location: 25

Percentage who most want the commitment to work for the entire summer and not to quit early: 12

Source: Ipsos Reid Public Affairs.

Percentage of all U.S. industries that are fortunate enough to be positively impacted by the recession, according to recent Recession Updates published by industry research firm IBISWorld: 5

Percentage of all industries that are negatively impacted: 60

Source: IBISWorld.

Percentage of Americans who agree that stocks remain a good long-term investment, according to a Gallup Poll: 53

Percentage of stock owners who agree with this statement: 67

Source: Gallup.

Number of hot dogs that will be served in ballparks around the country this season (enough to round the bases 30,186 times and stretch to and from Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia and Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., the two sites of the 2008 World Series), according to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council's (NHDSC) annual survey: 21,733,839

Source: NHDSC.

Number of people worldwide who received a micro loan (generally a loan under $1,000) in 2007, according to the Microcredit Summit's 2009 State of the Campaign Report by Sam Daley-Harris: 154 million

Of these people, number who were among the world's poorest, i.e. those making less than $1 per day: 106 million

Number who were women: 109 million

According to the report, number of family members that this financing likely affected: 533 million (a figure that roughly equals the total population of Latin America)

Source: Microcredit Summit.

Ranks of Internet/broadband/World Wide Web, PCs/laptop computers, mobile phones, e-mail, and DNA sequencing and testing/human genome mapping on the list of the top 30 innovations of the past 30 years as selected by a panel of judges at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Source: Knowledge@Wharton.

Percentage of employers surveyed who have a severance policy in place, according to the 2008 Compensation Data results: 57.9

Percentage of organizations that calculate severance pay based on years of service: 44.9

Source: Compdata Surveys.

Estimated total consumer debt in the U.S., according to the U.S. Federal Reserve and reported in a survey of working adults commissioned by Workplace Options: $963.5 billion

Percentage that is personal credit card debt: 98

Source: Workplace Options.

Among U.S. adults who use online resources to research and plan a vacation, average number of hours they spend doing so, according to findings from a hotels.com survey of U.S. adults: 8 (an increase of 48 minutes over the previous year)

Average number of reviews they read prior to booking a hotel: 8

Source: Hotels.com.

Date that P.T. Barnum and James A. Bailey merged their circuses to form Barnum and Bailey, the first circus to feature three rings and that became known as "The Greatest Show on Earth," according to the U.S. Census Bureau: March 28, 1881

Number of circuses operating in the U.S. today: 58

Estimated number of amusement and theme parks in the U.S., where most Americans now go for entertainment: 600

Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Idle Thought

"Society is like a stew. If you don't keep it stirred up, you get a lot of scum on the top." -- Edward Abbey, naturalist and author

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