Fun (and not so fun) factoids to amaze your friends

Did you realize that as of last month there were 16 people left in the world who were born in the 1800s? Or that If you add up annual profits of the entire airline industry going back to 1948, you get a loss of $32 billion? Motley Fool (via Business Insider) has put together 100 such facts and figures. a sampler:

--According to a study by Harvard professor David Wise and two colleagues, 46.1% of Americans die with less than $10,000 in assets.

--The U.K. economy is 3.3% smaller than it was in 2008. The U.S. economy is 2.9% larger (both adjusted for inflation).

--There were fewer state and local education jobs in 2012 than there were in 2005, even though the number of 5- to 18-year-olds has increased by 600,000.

--In 1980, there were 15,099 Americans aged 100 years or more. By 1990, there were 36,486, and by 2012 there were 88,510, according to the Census Bureau.

--Fortune magazine published an article titled "10 Stocks To Last the Decade" in August, 2000. By December 2012, the portfolio had lost 74.3% of its value, according to analyst Barry Ritholtz.

--According to a study by four economists from Cornell, Carnegie Mellon, and Vanguard, "the number of investors who check their accounts drops by 8.7% following a market decline compared to a market increase."

--The average new American home was 1,535 square feet in 1975 and 2,169 square feet in 2010, according to the Census Bureau.

--If you add up annual profits of the entire airline industry going back to 1948, you get -$32 billion.

--In the first quarter of 2012, the number of iPhones Apple sold per day surpassed the number of babies born per day worldwide (402,000 vs. 300,000), according to Mobile First.

--According to the Center for Economic and Policy Research, 44% of those working for minimum wage in 2010 had attended at least some college, up from 25% in 1979.

--In 2011, Asia had more millionaires than North America for the first time ever, according to RBC Wealth Management.

--Since U.S. markets bottomed in March 2009, more than $8 trillion of lost wealth has been recouped.

--According to Gallup, 51.3% of Americans consider themselves "thriving," 45.1% say they are "struggling," and 3.6% say they're "suffering."

--Federal nondefense discretionary spending -- all spending minus defense and entitlements -- is on track to hit its lowest level as a share of GDP in more than 50 years, according to data from the Congressional Budget Office.

--The unemployment rate for those with a bachelor's degree is just 3.7% -- less than half the nationwide average.

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
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