Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For April 26, 2015

Percentage of Americans who say government economic policies since the Great Recession have helped large banks and financial institutions a great deal, according to a Pew Research Center for the People and the Press poll: 45

Percentage who say they have helped the wealthy a great deal: 36

Percentage who say they have helped small businesses a great deal: 7

Percentage who say they have helped the middle class a great deal: 5

Source: Pew Research Center for the People and the Press.

Percentage of Americans who say they will be ready to retire at age 65 or sooner, according to a Gallup Poll for CBS: 46

Percentage of Americans who said they would be ready to retire at age 65 or sooner 10 years ago: 67

Percentage who say they will have to work until their 70s: 28

Source: Gallup Organization.

Value of global digital music revenue, matching physical sales for the first time, according to the IFPI Digital Music Report: $6.9 billion

Value of the subscription segment of the digital revenue -- 23 percent of digital's total: $1.6 billion

Source: IFPI Digital Music Report.

On a scale of 1 to 5, score given by employees on the importance of having quality coffee available in the workplace and its effect on their productivity, according to a survey by Packaged Facts: 3.9

Amount Packaged Facts estimates that trips offsite for coffee could translate into in lost work time annually per daily coffee-drinking employee: $1,563

Source: Packaged Facts.

Estimated number of occupied housing units across the country heated by wood in 2013, which is 2.1 percent of all homes, according to the U.S. Census Bureau: 2.4 million

Estimated number of occupied housing units across the country totally heated by solar energy in 2013: 50,235

Estimated number heated by utility gas in 2013, which is 49.1 percent of all homes: 56.8 million

Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Percentage of hiring managers who indicated that they have asked a question in a job interview only to find out later that it was illegal to ask, according to a survey by CareerBuilder: 20

Source: CareerBuilder.com.

Likely percentage of 18- to 29-year-olds who have never had a credit card, according to Bankrate: 33

Average age at which Americans say people should get their first credit card: 22

Source: Bankrate.com.

Percentage of senior managers who think their company is effective in recognizing employees for good performance, according to a survey by Robert Half International: 89

Percentage of all workers who say their company isn't good at recognizing good workers: 30

Ranks of rewards, growth opportunities and praise as the most valued forms of recognition: 1, 2, 3

Source: Robert Half International.

Percentage of homeowners who plan to spend money on home improvements this year, according to an annual survey by LightStream: 57

Percentage who will spend more than $5,000: 35

Percentage who will spend more than $10,000: 18

Percentage who will pay for it with credit cards: 30

Source: LightStream.

Percentage of Americans who say they are familiar with the sharing economy, according to a survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers: 44

Percentage who have tried the sharing economy firsthand: 19

Percentage who believe the sharing economy makes life more affordable: 86

Source: PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Idle Thought

"The difference in mind between man and the higher animals, great as it is, certainly is one of degree and not of kind." -- Charles Darwin

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