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English Vocabulary to Describe Statistics Correctly

Many professions require being able to talk about numbers and statistics, so it's important to know the English vocabulary for presenting statistics correctly either through speaking or writing. These verbs and adverbs will help you describe stats like a pro.

Total, Equal, Amount to, Add up to

When the subject is exactly the number. For example, if you have two bank accounts with $1,000 in one account and $5,000 in the other account, you can say: “my bank accounts total $6,000.”

  • The company’s assets total $30M.

  • The company’s assets equal $30M.

  • The company’s assets amount to $30M.

  • The company’s assets add up to $30M.

Exceed, Top, Surpass, Eclipse

When the subject is higher as a number than the object figure. For example, if profits are $3.1 million, you can say: “profits topped three million dollars.”

  • Vaccinations have topped three million

  • Vaccinations have exceeded three million

  • Vaccinations have surpassed three million

  • Vaccinations have eclipsed three million

Reach, Hit

When the subject was increasing and as an accomplishment it arrives at the object number. For example, if Netflix gets more and more subscribers and eventually arrives at 20 million people, you can say: “Netflix has reached twenty million subscribers.”

  • Bitcoin reaches $50,000.

  • Bitcoin hits $50,000.

Comprise, Constitute, Account for, Make up

When the subject is a component of something bigger, and the object tells us what percentage or fraction the subject is of the total. For example, if your company sells men’s clothes and women’s clothes and the total of these sales is $10M and women’s clothes sales is $7M, you can say: “women’s clothes comprise 70% of our sales.”

  • (Part) comprises (% or fraction) of (total): Asia comprises 23% of the company’s sales.

  • (Part) constitutes (% or fraction) of (total): Asia constitutes 23% of the company’s sales

  • (Part) accounts for (% or fraction) of (total): Asia accounts for 23% of the company’s sales.

  • (Part) makes up (% or fraction) of (total: Asia makes up 23% of the company’s sales.



Around, About, Approximately, Roughly (adverbs)

When the subject is close to the object number but might be a little or more or less. For example, if the number of employees in the company is close to 22,000 but might be 22,100 or 21,900, you can say: “the number of employees in the company is around 22,000.”

  • Sales in 2020 were around $10M.

  • Sales in 2020 were about $10M.

  • Sales in 2020 were approximately $10M.

  • Sales in 2020 were roughly $10M.

Nearly, Almost

When the subject is a little less than the number. For example, if you say: “the population of Canada is almost 38 million people” then it means the population of Canada is less than 38 million people but it’s close.

  • The company’s profit margin is almost 30% (but it’s actually 28%)

  • The company’s profit margin is nearly 30%

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Practice

Choose the correct word from below to fill in the blank. Read the whole sentence carefully to choose the correct word that fits with the description and also the word that fits grammatically (verb, adverb, etc.):

amounts to / nearly / account for / reached / roughly / surpassed / comprise

  1. Our market is share is _______ 10%. It’s currently 9.2% but it’s much higher than it used to be.

  2. The company’s valuation _________ $1B last year. Now it’s worth $1.3B.

  3. The number of Walmart outlets across the country now ________ 1,320 exactly.

  4. Teenagers ___________ 60% of our sales, while young adults ___________ 30%.

  5. We manufacture ___________ 13,000 products a day in our factories. Sometimes a little more and sometimes a little less but that's the general average.

  6. Our sales have been increasing for years, and we finally _____________ $1 million yesterday, which was a big accomplishment for our team.

Answers

  1. Our market is share is nearly 10%. It’s currently 9.2% but it’s much higher than it used to be.

  2. The company’s valuation surpassed $1B last year. Now it’s worth $1.3B.

  3. The number of Walmart outlets across the country now amounts to 1,320 exactly.

  4. Teenagers account for/comprise 60% of our sales, while young adults account for/comprise 30%.

  5. We manufacture roughly 13,000 products a day in our factories. Sometimes a little more and sometimes a little less but that's the general average.

  6. Our sales have been increasing for years, and we finally reached $1 million yesterday, which was a big accomplishment for our team.

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