Skip to main content
ABC News
Significant Digits For Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019

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

$100 billion in profit

For the first time in history, the six biggest Wall Street banks — JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley — made $100 billion in profit in a year. “They have Republican tax cuts to thank,” wrote Bloomberg. [Bloomberg]

6 times more powerful

CERN, the European research organization, has unveiled plans for a particle collider nearly four times longer and six times more powerful than its Large Hadron Collider, which is currently the largest machine in the world. The new project, named the Future Circular Collider (clever), would be 62 miles around. The LHC hasn’t found any new particles since the Higgs boson in 2012. The FCC would begin smashing in 2040, at the earliest. [Engadget]

325 to 306

Following the historic defeat of her Brexit plan the day before, Prime Minister Theresa May survived a vote of no confidence brought by the Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn in the House of Commons, 325 to 306. Her survival yesterday was expected, but her margin of victory “is not unassailable and she could well be vulnerable to a rebellion from hardline Brexiteers,” according to the New Statesman. [New Statesman]

691 isolation plays

James Harden, the Houston Rockets guard and reigning MVP, must be lonely. He’s had 691 “direct isolation plays” this season — 1-on-1 plays that end in a shot, turnover or foul. That’s more than any other NBA team this season, my colleague Chris Herring writes. [FiveThirtyEight]

10 games to 4

After winning the world chess championship in 1972, Bobby Fischer of the U.S. disappeared from the competitive game, failing to show up to defend his title in 1975 against Anatoly Karpov of the Soviet Union. But what if he had played? A new simulation of the erstwhile match, using computer programs tuned to play like the human grandmasters Fischer and Karpov, found that Fischer would’ve won, 10 to 4. U-S-A! U-S-A! [ChessBase]

$1 to $2 increase

Over the next few months, Netflix will increase the prices of all of its subscription plays by $1 to $2. “A Christmas Prince 3: Trimming the Tree” won’t make itself for free, you know? Netflix stock jumped 6 percent on the news. [CNN Business]

Love digits? Find even more in FiveThirtyEight’s book of math and logic puzzles, “The Riddler.” It’s in stores now! I hope you dig it.

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

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.