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Holiday Travel: Over 38 million Travelers; Lost Bags & Overbooked Flights High

AAA estimates that 38.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home this holiday, a 2.7% increase from 2005. Travel by car is forecast to be up 2.6%, while air travel is forecast to be up 3.2%, CNNMoney.com reports.

The ATA estimates that about 2.5 million passengers will fly this Sunday and Monday, filling about 90 percent to 91 percent of seats. Wednesday is expected to see just a little more than 2 million passengers and 82 percent of seats filled. The airlines have been filling a record 80.5 percentage of seats during the first nine months of the year.

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Gartner: Worldwide Mobile Phone Sales Grew 21.5% in 3Q 2006

Worldwide mobile phone sales totaled 251 million units in the third quarter of 2006, a 21.5% increase from the same period last year, according to Gartner. Driven by strong demand in India and China, sales in Asia/Pacific rose dramatically to 80.8 million units, a 54.7% increase from the same quarter last year. 

Sales to end users in North America reached 40.8 million units in the third quarter of 2006, up 12% from the same period last year. 

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Deloitte: Consumers Bullish on Economy; 38% No to Credit Cards; 66% Plan to Buy Gift Cards

While the government has lowered its forecast of the US economic growth, the American consumers are bullish about the economy, according to a survey of retail spending and trends, commissioned by Deloitte & Touche. 
  • 92% of consumers say a recent change in the market value of their home will have no impact on holiday spending
  • 82% consumers say they feel secure about their jobs
  • 68% expect the economy to improve or stay the same next year 

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White House Lowers Economic Growth, Citing Weak Housing Market

The U.S. government cut its economic growth forecasts through 2008 on Tuesday, citing the weakness of America’s housing market. In an updated economic forecast, the administration said it expects inflation-adjusted GDP to increase 3.1% this year, down from its June forecast of 3.6%. GDP growth is firther expected to slow to 2.9% in 2007, down from its previous estimate of 3.3% (WSJ). In 2008, the government sees growth of 3.1%, slightly lower than its prior estimate of 3.2% Economy 2006

GDP : 3.6%
Inflation: 2.3%
Unemployment: 4.6%

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20 million Small Businesses Online, Spending Billions: Jupiter

Some 78% (almost 20 million) small businesses currently use the Internet on a regular basis, according to a new JupiterResearch report, "Market Profile: Understanding Online Small Businesses".  82% of small businesses are expected to have Internet access by 2011, with some 88% of them utilizing broadband connections.

SmallBIZ
ONLINE

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Digital Music Market to Reach $14.9 billion by 2010, iSuppli

The global market for digital recorded music, delivered via broadband and over mobile phones, is expected to grow nearly 600% from $$2.7 billion in 2005 to reach $14.9 billion by 2010, according to iSuppli research. This amounts to a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of a very impressive 40.7%.

Mobile music has been driven by the popularity of ringtones and ringtunes, and is now migrating to full-track music downloads. The broadband music market has been led by iTunes music store. The overall broadband music subscription services grew to about 2.5 million subscribers at the end of 2005.

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WSJ By The Numbers - Top 10 for Nov.22

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

IBM, Cray Win Pentagon Funds To Develop Next Supercomputers: The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency said it will award Cray $250 million and IBM $244 million under a new phase of a long-running development program, which hopes to create not only major advances in hardware but also new ways to program massive scientific machines. The Darpa program is aimed at developing machines that operate at two to four "petaflops," or quadrillion operations a second, with prototype systems expected by 2010.

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