Morgan Housel, wrote a great article in Motley Fool listing 100 startling facts about the economy.
Here’s a selection of them, in no particular order…
1. As of January 2013, there are 16 people left in the world who were born in the 1800s, according to the Gerontology Research Group. With dividends reinvested, U.S. stocks have increased 28,000-fold during their lifetimes.
2. If you divide their net worths by their age, Carlos Slim and Bill Gates have each accumulated more than $100,000 in net worth for every hour they’ve been alive.
3. According to a study by Harvard professor David Wise and two colleagues, 46.1% of Americans die with less than $10,000 in assets.
4. There are 3.8 million fewer Americans aged 30 to 44 today than there were a decade ago.
5. “Last year, for the first time, spending by Apple and Google on patent lawsuits and unusually big-dollar patent purchases exceeded spending on research and development of new products,” writes The New York Times.
6. Start with a dollar. Double it every day. In 48 days you’ll own every financial asset that exists on the planet — about $200 trillion.
7. Adjusting for inflation, Warren Buffett was a millionaire by age 25.
8. “97% of the world’s population now lives in countries where the fertility rate is falling,” writes author Jonathan Last.
9. 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).
10. The International Labour Organization estimates a record 200 million people will be unemployed around the world in 2013. If you gave them their own country, it would be the fifth-largest in the world.
11. Despite the overall population doubling, more babies were born in the U.S. in 1956 than were born in 2009, 2010, or 2011.
12. According to The Telegraph, “Four in 10 girls born today is expected to live to 100. … If trends continue, the majority of girls born in 2060 — some 60 per cent — will live to see 2160.”
13. “Globally, the production of a given quantity of crop requires 65% less land than it did in 1961,” writes author Matt Ridley.
14. Thanks in large part to cellphone cameras, “Ten percent of all of the photographs made in the entire history of photography were made last year,” according to Time.
15. Two news headlines published on the same day last September summed up the U.S. economy perfectly: “U.S. Median Income Lowest Since 1995, ” and “Ferrari sales surge to record highs.”
16. If you add up annual profits of the entire airline industry going back to 1948, you get -$32 billion.
17. One in seven crimes committed in New York City now involves an Apple product being stolen, according to NYPD records cited by ABC News.
18. 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.
19. According to economist Glen Weyl, “Of Harvard students graduating in early ’90s and pursuing careers in finance, 1/3 were making over $1 million a year by 2005.”
20. 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.
21. In 2011, Asia had more millionaires than North America for the first time ever, according to RBC Wealth Management.
22. In 2012, the Greek stock market (ATHEX Index) outperformed the Chinese stock market (Shanghai Composite) by 48 percentage points.
23. The International Energy Agency predicts that the U.S. will become the world’s largest oil-producer by 2020, overtaking Saudi Arabia.
24. According to Wired magazine, “In a 2006 survey, 30 percent of people without a high school degree said that playing the lottery was a wealth-building strategy. … On average, households that make less than $12,400 a year spend 5 percent of their income on lotteries.”
25. According to The Economist, “Over the past ten years, hedge-fund managers have underperformed not just the stock market, but inflation as well.”
26. “More than 50 million Americans couldn’t afford to buy food at some point in 2011,” writes CNNMoney, citing U.S. Department of Agriculture data.
Read the complete list at Motley Fool
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