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Significant Digits For Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018

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

28 counties

That’s how many Pennsylvania counties were split into separate congressional districts by a GOP redistricting plan from 2011. A new one issued by the state Supreme Court splits only 13 and is a potential boon to Democrats who had been disadvantaged in the state due to gerrymandering. [The Huffington Post]

$387 million

In a development that prompted experts to say, “holy crap,” the film “Black Panther” blew past expectations this weekend, making about $218 million between Friday and Monday and $387 million internationally in its opening weekend. Analysts had projected a domestic take around $165 million, an already high bar. [The New York Times]

30 points

Elizabeth Swaney essentially snuck into the Olympics as one of 24 skiers attempting to qualify for the finals in the halfpipe. I use the term “qualify” as liberally as possible, because she did not attempt any tricks and just gingerly skied down the halfpipe, getting 30 points from all the judges. Essentially, Swaney traveled the world and competed in Olympic qualifiers that were so under-attended she was able to do not-worst-enough to make Hungary’s team. [Yahoo]

646 closures

Kentucky Fried Chicken ran out of chicken in the United Kingdom, rendering their entire menu essentially useless at 646 stores, forcing them to close. Right now 562 remain closed due to a lack of poultry. [The Guardian]


A prominent Florida GOP donor has told Republicans that he will not contribute further to conservative causes and politicians until they support a ban on the military-style assault weapons that have been used in mass shootings such as the one that claimed the lives of 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last week. Al Hoffman Jr. gave $25,000 to the Senate Leadership Fund in the spring and over $1 million to Jeb Bush’s Super PAC during the 2016 campaign. [The New York Times]

1.5 million subscribers

The WWE is doing the kind of business that makes it a potential acquisition target for content-hungry media conglomerates, scoring $50.6 million in net income off of $801 million in revenue last year, an all-time high. The company managed to build what is the 11th-most-popular streaming service in the United States, with some 1.5 million subscribers paying $9.99 a month for its content. [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.