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Significant Digits For Monday, April 16, 2018

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news.

1.2 percent

Retail sales of traditional milk are projected to drop 1.2 percent in 2018, while sales of other alternative milks — oat milk, soy milk, and greatest-of-all-milk almond milk – are projected to rise 3 percent. [Bloomberg]

2.4 percent

The 2018 box office is down 2.4 percent compared to the same period in 2017. This past weekend, “Rampage” pulled ahead of “A Quiet Place” and became the best-ever film based on a video game to star Dwayne Johnson, a bar that is unfathomably low. [Variety]

3 caribou

There’s only one remaining herd of southern mountain caribou in the lower 48 states, a group that hangs out in northern Idaho, Washington and Canada. In 2009, the herd numbered around fifty; today it’s down to three. Experts blame industrial development in British Columbia, so for the first time in U.S.-Canadian relations we’re not the bad neighbor. [The New York Times]

23.5 square feet

The U.S. has a large amount of retail real estate per capita, with 23.5 square feet of retail space per person, which is more than double the square footage in Australia, where there is 11.1 square feet per person and 16.4 square feet in Canada. Right now the retail business is seeing a spate of bankruptcies, but there is a little bit of an overcapacity problem at the heart of this. [The New York Times]

39 percent

Mass attendance for Catholics is down with 39 percent of Catholics saying they had attended church in a given week. That figure was 45 percent about 10 years ago and was as high as 75 percent in the mid 1950s. This means that Catholic mass attendance is well below weekly Protestant church attendance (45 percent) for the first time. [Gallup, Catholic News Agency]

90 percent

In 2015, Gilead Sciences’ hepatitis C treatment peaked at $12.5 billion, and Goldman Sachs forecasts that this year sales will be less than $4 billion. The decline in sales is because the treatments have cure rates north of 90 percent, which means that people who solve their hepatitis C issue no longer need to remain customers. For most people, this is good news — medicine successfully cures disease — but for people whose calling in life is to wring out every possible dollar from a pharmaceutical company, curing patients may in fact be an unsustainable business model. [Ars Technica]

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If you see a significant digit in the wild, send it to @WaltHickey.

Walt Hickey was FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer.