WSJ By The Numbers - Top 10 for Nov.21

A compendium of revealing stats and the key leading economic indicators and business metrics based on today's Wall Street Journal article and reports:

Democrats' Rx? Generics: Generics accounted for 56% of all prescriptions dispensed in 2005, according to IMS Health data, but less than 13.1% of every dollar spent on prescription drugs. Generics cost, on average, 30% to 80% less than their brand counterparts. Generic pharmaceutical products are used to fill more than one billion prescriptions every year. U.S. brand pharmaceutical sales for 2005: $229.5 billion. U.S. generic pharmaceutical sales: $22.3 billion, according to IMS Health (via Generic Pharmaceutical Association - GPhA)

Democrats Target Wealth Gap And Hope Not to Hit Economy: Raising the top two tax rates, now 33% and 35%, by a single percentage point would yield $90 billion over five years, the Congressional Budget Office estimates.

About 25% of people in households with incomes below $25,000 lack any health insurance, even government provided. Among the over-$75,000 crowd, only 8.5% are without insurance. About 45% of full-time workers on private payrolls aren't offered private retirement savings plans of any sort at work.

Is the Worst Over for the Housing Bust?: Economists expect a relatively happy holiday for retailers, forecasting a 5.1% rise in sales from last year. Just eight of 56 economists expect the Federal Reserve to raise rates beyond the current 5.25% rate before June 2007. Economists expect just 107,000 new jobs a month over the next year, down from 109,800 forecast in October and 179,400 at the high for this year's surveys, in February. 5.1%
Chinese Turn to Stocks: In a strong year for stocks globally, the Chinese benchmark indexes for the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock markets through the end of October outperformed all but the Peruvian and Cyprus markets, according to a World Federation of Exchanges report on 59 indexes. The Chinese stock market is up 74% this year, and increased 99% from an eight-year low in July 2005. China's stock market is 30% bigger now than it was at the market peak in 2001, with a current capitalization of about 6.4 trillion yuan (or about $800 billion) and 1,386 listed companies. 74%
Web-Page Clocks and Other 'Widgets' Anchor New Internet Strategy: Freewebs provides free tools (web widgets) for consumers to build Web sites. AKQA created weather widget to promote Microsoft Flight Simulator X for Xbox was downloaded more than 150,000 times, spending an average of 23 minutes with the flight simulator, the agency says. 23 Min.

Scheduling Online Ads: ComScore analyzed online shopping trends in 2005 and found that Monday and Tuesday had the highest shares of consumer spending, each with 18% of total sales for the week; Wednesday had 17% of sales; Thursday 15% and Friday 16%. Sales fell off markedly on Saturday and Sunday, averaging 9% and 8% of a week's total sales, respectively.  The highest percentage of dollars spent online during a typical weekday occurs between 11 a.m. and noon, comScore says. About 58% of all online shopping is done at work, down just 1% from a few years ago.

Ready to Deal: $60 Billion in Two Days: More than 35 deals were announced globally during the two days. Leveraged buyouts account for some 17% of the $3.4 trillion in transactions announced globally so far this year. Almost $1.3 trillion of mergers have been announced in the U.S. alone. In the U.S., corporations have sold $109 billion in "high yield," or junk, bonds and raised an additional $593 billion in junk-rated bank loans so far this year, according to Dealogic. Last year they raised $707 billion in bonds and loans in the U.S. $3.4T

WSJ By The Numbers - Metrics 2.0

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