Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For April 20, 2014

Percentage of Americans who agree that the SAT should be required for college admissions, according to YouGov Omnibus research: 37

Percentage who believe the SAT is a good indicator of future college performance: 36

Percentage who believe the SAT is a good indicator of how well an individual will do in life: 22

Source: YouGov.

Percentage of consumers who lack confidence in their knowledge or understanding of their personal finances, according to findings from a personal finance survey conducted for RetailMeNot: 49

Percentage of respondents who do not have enough money saved to last them more than a month if they were to lose all sources of income: 48

Source: RetailMeNot.com.

Ranks of staying physically and mentally fit, spending time with family, eating healthy and maintaining an active social life on the list of the top priorities expressed by older consumers across 60 countries in a Nielsen global survey: 1, 2, 3, 4

Source: Nielsen Analytics.

Percentage of shoppers who said they often or sometimes feel guilty about purchases, according to a CreditDonkey.com survey: 54

Percentage who said they rarely feel that urge to return their purchases: 41

Percentage who never feel nagging guilt: 5

Source: CreditDonkey.com.

Percentage of U.S. consumers who use their mobile device to take photos, according McAfee's 2014 Love, Relationships & Technology survey: 98

Percentage who send or receive intimate content, including video, photos, emails and messages: 54

Percentage of respondents who are securing their smartphone with a password or passcode, a 30 percentage point increase from last year's result: 69

Source: McAfee Inc.

Years of Prohibition in America, considered a noble experiment that failed as the subsequent crime associated with bootlegging caused problems worse than the lone problem of drunkenness: 1920 to 1933

Year Congress amended the Volstead Act to permit beer of 3.2 percent alcohol to be brewed and sold: 1933

Today, estimated number of beer, wine and liquor stores in the U.S., with sales of over $36 billion: 31,000

Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Percentage of teens who believe in God, compared to 74 percent of adults, according to a Harris poll: 80

Percentage of teens who believe in miracles, compared to 72 percent of adults: 76

Percentage of teens who believe in the devil, compared to 58 percent of adults: 65

Source: Harris Interactive.

Percentage of chief financial officers who said the job interview is where candidates make the most mistakes, according to a survey by Accountemps: 43

Percentage of executives who felt applicants most frequently slip up when writing their resumes: 19

Ranks of interview follow-up (11 percent), cover letter (10 percent) and phone interview/screen on the list of areas where CFOs said job candidates make the most mistakes: 3, 4, 5

Source: Accountemps.

Overall sales in U.S. convenience stores in 2013, in-store sales climbing 2.4 percent to $204 billion combined with motor fuel sales of $491.5 billion, according to figures released by the National Association of Convenience Stores: $695.5 billion

Percentage of in-store sales accounted for by tobacco (cigarettes and other tobacco products): 37

Percentage accounted for by food service (prepared and commissary food, and hot, cold and dispensed beverages): 18

Source: National Association of Convenience Stores.

Percentage of nonprofits that reported an increase in demand for services, the sixth straight year of increased demand, according the results of the Nonprofit Finance Fund's 2014 State of the Nonprofit sector survey: 80

Percentage who were unable to meet demand in 2013 -- the highest reported in the survey's history: 56

Percentage who expect 2014 to be easier than 2013 for the people they serve: 11

Source: Nonprofit Finance Fund.

Idle Thought

"Several excuses are always less convincing than one." -- Aldous Huxley

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