Math Skills of the Average American


My son was home for a visit this past weekend. After a family dinner at the Irvine Spectrum, we found ourselves in a women’s clothing store with a sale going on: 40% Off All Merchandise + An Additional 10% Off.

My son said to me, “Isn’t that just 46 percent off? They probably want it to sound like you’re getting 50 percent off.”

“You can’t underestimate the math skills of the average American,” I said.

Right on queue, a woman said to her husband, “Why don’t they just say 50 percent off?”

“Exactly,” he said.

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