WSJ: Numbers Guy

The Numbers Guy examines numbers in the news, business and politics. Some numbers are flat-out wrong or biased, while others are valid and help us make informed decisions. Carl Bialik tells the stories behind the stats, in daily updates on this blog and in his column published every other Friday in The Wall Street Journal. Carl, who holds a degree in mathematics and physics from Yale University, also cowrites The Daily Fix, a sports column on He welcomes your comments at .

WSJ: The Numbers
The Numbers
copyright © 2015 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
The Wall Street Journal examines the way numbers are used, and abused.

Behind The Numbers: The NCAA’s Data-Hungry First Medical Officer
Oliver Luck, the new NCAA executive vice president of regulatory affairs, describes the organization’s first medical officer, Brian Hainline, as an empiricist.
Reader Mailbag: Baseball vs. Football
Readers of last weekend’s column entertaining the question of which sport is more popular--Major League Baseball or the National Football League--asked an interesting follow-up question: What are the demographics of the fans?
Numbers in Sports: Football Bankruptcies and Bobby Bonilla
Nearly one in six NFL players files for bankruptcy within a dozen years of retirement, according to new research. Think of them as the anti-Bobby Bonilla
Number of the Day: $2,815
The Internal Revenue Service and Tax Day bring us today's top number, $2,815, or the average tax refund issued through April 3.
Behind The Numbers: Why Football Might Be Bettor
Is it possible football owes its popularity to television and gambling?
Behind the Numbers: Lost Savings
Conventional wisdom holds that eliminating the dollar bill in favor of a dollar coin would save the government billions of dollars.
March Jobs Report – The Numbers
U.S. employers sharply slowed their hiring in March to the weakest pace in more than a year, the latest sign that the economy stumbled in the early months of 2015.
Reader Mailbag: Two More Cents on Streaming
Our column last week on royalties in the digital age provoked considerable discussion about music-streaming services and how artists are compensated in the new pay-per-play world. The main takeaway: Musicians need to adapt to survive.
Number of the Day: 6,441
Today's top number, 6,441, represents the number of foreign adoptions by U.S. parents.
Behind the Numbers: Song Streaming
Streaming music may be a boon for those interested in knowing exactly how many times their songs are played, and by whom. But managing per-song, per-play transactions isn’t a simple task.