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Significant Digits For Thursday, Aug. 1, 2019

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

10 percent of recipients

The Trump administration’s trade-war aid for farmers is not being distributed evenly. Ten percent of the recipients have received more than half the money, according to an analysis by the Environmental Working Group. Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley and the president of the National Farmers Union, among others, criticized that imbalance, suggesting that they’ll help large farms get larger and not assist the smaller farms that need the aid. [Bloomberg]

$100 million extension

Michael Thomas has agreed to a five-year, $100 million contract extension — a 1,700 percent raise — with the New Orleans Saints, according to league sources. That makes Thomas the highest paid wide receiver in the NFL. [ESPN]

65 percent of cigarettes

An estimated 65 percent of cigarettes smoked in America are littered. Figures, since cigarettes are the single most littered object in the world. This has made cigarette butts, which are made from a potentially toxic plastic called cellulose acetate, an object of sharp focus for environmental regulators. Some tobacco companies are testing biodegradable filters, others portable ashtrays, and others still are turning to behavioral psychologists to understand why smokers litter. [The Wall Street Journal]

20 percent of funeral homes

The mortuary industry is not, as a general rule, known for disruptive innovation. But the practice of live-streaming funerals has “recently exploded in popularity” and the president-elect of the National Funeral Directors Association estimates that 20 percent of funeral homes now offer the service. The service caters to those loved ones unable to travel on short notice to pay their respects, and cements my plan to become an influencer not only in life but from beyond the grave. [Wired]

21 Tony awards

Harold Prince, the prodigious Broadway director and producer, died at the age of 91. During his career, he won a remarkable 21 Tony awards — a record — including statues for “Damn Yankees,” “Cabaret,” “Fiddler on the Roof,” “Sweeney Todd” and “Phantom of the Opera.” [Associated Press]

10-day sentence

A magistrate judge in a place called Garfield Heights has sentenced a woman to 10 days in jail for feeding stray cats in apparent violation of a Garfield Heights ordinance. “The cats keep coming over to my house,” Nancy Segula told “I just feel bad so then I will give them something to eat.” #FreeNancy. []

From ABC News:

SigDigs: Aug. 1, 2019

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Oliver Roeder was a senior writer for FiveThirtyEight. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Texas at Austin, where he studied game theory and political competition.