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Registered Rep. Readers Do It By The Numbers

Smart decisions are based on more than government statistics, agency reports, news releases, interest rates and stock quotes. We've selected a few

Smart decisions are based on more than government statistics, agency reports, news releases, interest rates and stock quotes. We've selected a few fascinating statistics here that illuminate the markets, the world of financial services and big business.

  1. Number of companies in the 30-stock Dow Jones Industrial Average that have announced job cuts since October, 2008: 25

  2. Number of companies in the 30-stock Dow that recorded share price appreciation in 2008: 2 (McDonalds, Wal-Mart)

  3. Average return on investment in Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) in 2008, including dividends as measured by the FTSE NAREIT All REIT: -37.3 percent

  4. Average decline in commercial-mortgage REITs, the hardest hit segment: -74.8 percent

  5. Average return on the top performing REIT category, self storage: 5.1 percent

  6. Drop in stock price of British banks, RBS, Lloyd's Banking and Barclays, respectively, from 52-week high as of January 2009: -94 percent, -79 percent, -79 percent

  7. Number of years ago that the key overnight rate of the Bank of England hit its current low rate of 1.5 percent: Never in its 315 year history

  8. Total amount of outstanding credit expressed as a function of GDP in the U.S.: 201 percent

  9. In Euro zone countries: 116 percent

  10. In Japan: 419 percent

  11. Change in the price of gasoline year-over-year through December 2008: -43.1 percent

  12. Of residential real estate: -18.2 percent

  13. Of legal services: +5.2 percent

  14. Of college tuition and fees: +5.8 percent

  15. Number of millionaires among the 9 justices on the U.S. Supreme Court: 7

  16. Processing speed of a new military supercomputer assembled from components originally designed for computer games: 1.026 quadrillion calculations per second

  17. U.S. share of the world economy in 2000: 31 percent

  18. In 2008: 25 percent

  19. Number of companies in the 2008 proxy season that adopted clawback provisions allowing recovery of executive pay based on incorrect financial statements: 295

  20. Number of such clawback provisions in 2004: 14

  21. Value of mutual funds and discretionary assets at the end of the third quarter 2008 that comply with Shariah, or Islamic law: $65 billion

  22. Probability that illness or accident will keep an employee out of work for at least one year: 20 percent

  23. Number of discrete campaign promises made by Barak Obama in 2008: 510

  24. Number made by George W. Bush in 2000: 177

  25. Average annual earnings of CEOs at Japan's 100 biggest companies in 2008: $1.5 million

  26. Average for U.S. CEOs: $13 million

Sources: 11 NY Times; 2 Newsweek; 3-5 National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts; 6 Bloomberg; 7 Bank of England; 8-10 World Bank; 11 Burea of Labor Statistics; 12 Standard and Poor's/Case-Shiller 20-City Composite Home Price Index; 13-14 Consumer Price Index; 15 U.S. Supreme Court; 16 IBM; 17-18 World Bank, N.Y. Times; 19-20 The Corporate Library; 21 Cerulli Associates Inc.; 22 Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education; 23-24 National Public Radio; 25-26 Towers Perrin.

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