Figuratively Speaking for October 24, 2010

Year that the first World Series game in major league history took place as the Pittsburgh Pirates defeated the Boston Red Sox 7-3 before 16,200 fans: 1903

Number of spectators who attend baseball games in America each year: 80 million

Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Percentage of American invoices that were paid late, according to findings published in the Payment Practices Barometer global report, released by international trade credit insurer Atradius: 39

Percentage of U.S. businesses that reported that customers had asked for extended payment terms over the last six months: 52

Source: Atradius Corporate Communications and Marketing.

Average percentage of revenues that software companies with more than $100,000 in annual revenue spend on customer acquisition, according to a survey by TrialPay: 15

Average percentage of revenues that smaller vendors with under $100,000 in annual revenue are spending to acquire customers: 54

Source: TrialPay.

Percentage of Americans without cats who have purposely not visited a home because there were two or more cats living there, according to a survey conducted by Purina Tidy Cats: 49

Percentage of Americans without cats who went so far as to say they would be willing to give up shopping, a favorite beverage, cell phone, television or Internet access to avoid spending a week in a multiple-cat home: 60

According to the survey, percentage more likely that multiple-cat homes are than those without cats to receive guests a few times a week: 48 vs. 29

Source: Purina Tidy Cats.

Number of potential trick-or-treaters -- children 5 to 13 -- across the United States, according to U.S. Census Bureau data: 36 million

Ranks of witch, ghost and clown on the list of traditional costumes most worn by trick-or-treaters: 1, 2, 3

Ranks of "Toy Story 3" characters, "Avatar" characters and "Alice in Wonderland" characters on the list of the most favored costumes of the moment: 1, 2, 3

Rank of Lady Gaga as the most favored costume for women: 1

Rank of Iron Man as the most favored for men: 1

Source: National Retail Foundation.

Ranks of certified public accountants (CPAs) (62 percent), bankers (52 percent) and financial advisers (51 percent) on the list of financial professionals most relied on for help with money management, according to a national Capstrat-Public Policy Polling survey: 1, 2, 3

Source: Capstrat-Public Policy Polling.

Percentage of students who believe they will still be somewhat financially dependent on their parents after graduation, according to a BookRenter College Experience survey: 69

Percentage who anticipate that they will be forced to move home after school: 20

Source: BookRenter.

Percentage of adults who agree that they are aware of the risks involved with managing financial accounts online, according to a survey conducted by ING: 93

Percentage of adults who agree that financial services companies should be doing more to protect their customers' personal and financial information: 90

Percentage of respondents who access financial accounts online, such as checking, savings, 401(k) or investment accounts: 75

Source: ING.

Percentage of workers with a job who say their company is understaffed, according to Gallup's Job Creation Index: 38

Percentage who say their company has about the right number of employees: 52

Percentage of American workers who believe their company has too many employees: 8

Source: Gallup.

Percentage of Americans who say they are more likely to purchase something when the ad touts it is "Made in America," according to a Harris poll: 61

Percentage of U.S. adults who say they are neither more nor less likely to purchase a product when an ad emphasizes it is "Made in America": 35

Source: Harris Interactive.

Idle Thought

"Be good and you will be lonesome." -- Mark Twain, author and humorist

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

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