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Significant Digits For Thursday, April 5, 2018

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

32 percent

That’s the incline grade of Baxter street in Los Angeles, making it the third steepest street in L.A. and one of the 10 steepest streets in the United States. This isn’t an issue for locals, who know to take the incline nice and easy. It is rather an issue for all the people just passing through who are using apps like Waze and crashing their vehicles because they were sent down a road that was way steeper than they thought. [The Los Angeles Times]

94 percent

Flexible work arrangements — think gig employment, independent contractors and freelancers — accounted for 94 percent of the net employment growth in the United States from 2005 to 2015. How the government regulates the treatment of these people will have broad reaching effects across the entire economy. [The Atlantic]

118 percent

There is not a link between immigration and crime. Since 1980, the immigrant population in the United States increased 118 percent. Since 1980, the violent crime rate in the United States decreased 36 percent. Indeed, cities that had more immigrants tended to see a decrease in crime. [The Marshall Project]


How much it costs in the United States to buy two packs of cigarettes, a bottle of liquor, a gram of amphetamines, a gram of pot, a gram of cocaine and a gram of opioids, according to a bundle of illicit goods annually valued by Bloomberg. The “vice index” is $217.90 more than it was a year ago. [Bloomberg]

Most of 2 billion

Approximate number of Facebook users who have had their public profiles scraped by a third party without their permission. Oh; that is basically all of the Facebook users. [The Wall Street Journal]

$88 billion

The recent privacy scandal has wiped out a pretty considerable amount of Facebook’s value. Three weeks ago the company was worth something like $538 billion, but it’s since fallen to around $449.5 billion, a decline of roughly $88 billion in value. [ABC News]

CORRECTION (April 5, 2018, 11:21 a.m.): A previous version of this article misstated the annual change in the price of the Bloomberg Vice Index. It is $217.90 more expensive this year, not $217.90 cheaper.

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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.