Harper’s Index,
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Factor by which the average salary in the securities industry exceeded that of other U.S. workers between 1929 and 2008 : 2.3

By which it does today : 3.6

Portion of financial-services workers who say that they must “engage in unethical or illegal activity to be successful” : 1/5

Percentage of black professional U.S. women who aspire to “a powerful position with a prestigious title” : 22

Percentage of white professional women who do : 8

Percentage change since 2002 in the birthrate among unmarried U.S. women aged 35 to 39 : +52

Among unmarried U.S. teenagers : –32

Percentage change in the past four decades in the size of the average American family : –10

In the square footage of the average newly built American home : +60

Percentage change since 1993 in the suicide rate among black U.S. children aged 5 to 11 : +87

Among white U.S. children : –32

Tuition cost of Icon Academy, a four-day summer camp devoted to “teaching teens how to monetize their talents” : $3,000

Percentage change since 2009 in the number of federal prison inmates aged 65 and older : +42

In inmate health-care expenses : +29

Estimated average number of names added to the FBI’s criminal registry each day : 11,000

Number of facial composites created with DNA from litter in Hong Kong for use in a local public-shaming campaign : 27

Estimated number of government officials executed so far this year in North Korea : 15

Estimated percentage change in the past year in the number of beheadings performed in Saudi Arabia : +267

Number of executioner jobs advertised on Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Civil Service website in May : 8

Factor by which polygamous Saudi and Emirati men are more likely than monogamous ones to suffer from heart disease : 4.6

Percentage change since 2003 in the portion of Americans who say that polygamy is “morally acceptable” : +129

Percentage change over the past three decades in the number of U.S. gyms and health clubs : +455

In the U.S. obesity rate : +65

Hours of television watched each day by the average U.S. kindergartner : 3.3

Percentage by which a kindergartner who watches more than an hour a day is more likely to be obese : 73

Last year in which Pope Francis watched television : 1990

Percentage change since last year in the number of minority-produced network television shows : +3

Percentage of this increase attributable to Tyler Perry : 100

Percentage of white and black Americans, respectively, who said in March that race relations were “generally bad” : 35, 58

In May : 62, 65

Rate of homicides of black men in major U.S. urban areas : 52 per 100,000

Of police officers in the same areas : 3 per 100,000

Estimated portion of fatalities following police use of Tasers in which “excited delirium” is cited among the causes of death : 1/5

Number of years since 2000 in which traffic accidents have been the leading cause of U.S. law-enforcement deaths : 12

Percentage of all vehicle miles traveled in the United States that are traveled by motorcycles : 0.68

Percentage of people who die in U.S. road accidents who are motorcyclists : 10

Number of crashes involving Google’s self-driving cars that have occurred since testing began in 2009 : 13

Percentage of those crashes attributable to human-driver error : 100

Average annual number of traffic jams at Yellowstone National Park caused by drivers’ rubbernecking of bears : 840

Figures cited are the latest available as of June 2015.

“Harper’s Index” is a registered trademark.

August Index Sources

1,2 U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis
3 Ann Tenbrunsel, University of Notre Dame (South Bend, Ind.)
4,5 Center for Talent Innovation (N.Y.C.)
6,7 U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Atlanta)
8,9 U.S. Census Bureau (Suitland, Md.)
10,11 Jeffrey A. Bridge, Nationwide Children’s Hospital (Columbus, Ohio)
12 Icon Business Development (Beverly Hills, Calif.)
13,14 Federal Bureau of Prisons
15 Federal Bureau of Investigation
16 Ogilvy & Mather (Hong Kong)
17 Hyong-hee Shin, Korea Herald (Seoul)
18,19 Human Rights Watch (N.Y.C.)/Amnesty International (N.Y.C.)
20 Amin Daoulah, King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Center (Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)
21 Gallup (Washington)
22 International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (Boston)
23 Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (Seattle)
24,25 Mark DeBoer, University of Virginia (Charlottesville)
26 Juan Berretta, Voz del Pueblo (Buenos Aires)
27,28 Directors Guild of America (Los Angeles)
29,30 CBS News Surveys (N.Y.C.)
31,32 U.S. Census Bureau (Suitland, Md.)/ Criminal Justice Information Services Division, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Clarksburg, W.Va.)
33 Amnesty International (N.Y.C.)
34 National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (Washington)
35 Federal Highway Administration
36 Ian Savage, Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.)
37,38 Google (Mountain View, Calif.)
39 Kerry Gunther, U.S. National Park Service (Yellowstone, Wyo.)