$OME $UMMARY $TAT$
Perhaps the most important #s for any Woodward Dream Cruise (WDC) are its likely attendance, the # of parading/cruisin’ vehicles and its economic impact. The WDC website claims 1 M± observers, 40,000 muscle/collector/custom cars & street rods AND $50 M in direct spending. (We update this estimation to $75 M b/c we know the # of observers has grown to 1½ M). According to Table 1, the price for a loaf (1lb) of bread, 1 movie tix, a Big Mac and a new home have ALL increased b/t 75% & 110% from 1995 to 2014. One of the smallest % growers at 53% is that beleaguered 1st class stamp (49¢). Our biggest % growers (next to WDC attendance given yr 1’s attd of 250,000) are the Fed’l Debt (+256%) and the Dow Jones Avgs (+250%) followed by a gal of gas (+212%). How ironic is it of ALL the items to be purchased in Table 1, gasoline prices have grown the fastest while the price of a new car has grown at the 2nd slowest rate. (For the purposes of this discussion we did NOT include the negative growers [Big 3’s market share & Det’s population] from ’95 to ’14 at 79%.)
In 1995 (WDC I) Bill Clinton was prez, OJ was found NOT guilty and Princess Di admitted to infidelity. During that same year Bill Gates was crowned by Forbes as the world’s richest man; Yahoo was born; the Dow Jones hit both 4,000 and 5,000; and the US’ unemployment rate was 5.6%. WOW! The Fed’l Debt was $4.9 T. DOUBLE WOW! Toy Story I boxed $192 M domestically and $170 M in the overseas box. Batman Forever earned $184 M domestically and $152 M overseas. “Shock Jock” Howard Stern premiered in PHX. X-Files and Friends were among TV’s most popular. For Your Love (Stevie Wonder) and Baby, It’s You (Beatles) were songs of the day. In 1995 the world counted 5.7 B people with 262 M in the US and 9 M in Michigan.
2014 will be remembered as a year of international events and we’re only in August. From the Wntr Olympics in Sochi, Russia to the FIFA World Cup on the other side of the globe in Brazil, 2014 has in many ways brought our ever growing world together. Not all news however, is good news. With conflicts between Russia & Ukraine, Israel & Gaza, the worst Ebola outbreak ever in West Africa and multiple civilian carrying aircrafts & boats crashing across the world, we wonder how & why these devastating losses happened? Forbes named Carlos Slim Helu (Mexico) the world’s richest man ($79.6 B) Bill Gates was #2 ($79.2 B) with Warren Buffett being #3 ($62.6B). To date Transformers 4 is #1 at the global box ($1.0 B) and X-Men 7 is #2 ($739.9 M) with Maleficent being #3 ($717.6M). For current events please see the Info Please Almanac 2014 and for movie box office data please see boxofficemojo.com.
B/T 1995 and 2014 (thus far) the GDP has grown 122%: the avg price of ALL grades/ALL shades of gasoline has increased 212% ; the Dow Jones Avgs has zoomed 250% and the Fed’l Debt has soared by a whopping 256%. (All %’s compare the most recent #’s during Aug 95 with Aug 2014.)