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Significant Digits For Monday, March 12, 2018

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

70 percent

A new study of how news spreads on the Internet found that false claims were far more likely to spread far and wide than true ones. Lies were 70 percent more likely than the truth to get shared on Twitter, while true stories took about six times as long to reach 1,500 people as fake ones. [The New York Times]


12 percent

Sales of high heel shoes were down 12 percent last year, while sales of women’s sneakers were up 37 percent, according to the NPD Group’s retail tracking service. This is despite ample supply (inventory of heels was up 28 percent) and good deals (a third of the heels were discounted by an average of 47 percent). [The Washington Post]


2,958 to 2

China’s National People’s Congress voted 2,958 to 2, with three abstentions and one invalid vote, to remove a 35-year-old part of the constitution limiting the president to two consecutive terms, a win for Chinese President Xi Jinping. [The New York Times]


11.9 million guns

About 11.9 million firearms are made in the United States every year, a quarter of which — over 3 million — are produced in Massachusetts. The Bay State edges out New Hampshire, Arizona, New York and Florida as the largest firearms producer in the country. [Bloomberg]


13 million tons

That’s how much wild fish China catches in its own territorial waters, up from some 3 million tons in the mid-1970s. Despite that surge — which the Ministry of Agriculture calculates to be about 25 percent more than what’s sustainable — China’s voracious appetite for seafood means that the nation has become a net seafood importer. [Bloomberg]


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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.

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