by Joseph Ganem

**Part I Daily Deceptions**

1. Shopping: Meaningless Comparisons

- Elements of Deceptive Math
- Comparison Shopping
- Anchoring Effects
- The Negotiation Principle
- Summary
- Advertising the Nonexistent

2. Averaging: Numbers In Place of Judgement

- A Class Where All the Children Are Above Average
- Meaningful Averages
- The Numerical Outcome Principle
- Examples of the “Numerical Outcome Principle”
- Summary
- Why I Would Fail Third Grade Math

3. Financial Planning: Is It Reasonable?

- A Different Way of Planning
- "Fermi Problems"
- Investing in a Business or Job
- Limits and Saturation
- Investing in Stocks
- The Mediocrity Assumption
- Summary
- The Tale of the Quarter Without a Tail

4. Charting: Pictures Worth More Than a Thousand Words

- Different Pictures of the Same Data
- Your Tax Dollars
- Charts Not Seen
- Defining the “Deficit”
- Stock Charts
- Summary
- Medical Malpractice: A Two-Headed Quarter?

**Part II Income**

5. Earning and Saving: The Deceptive Math of Income Growth

- The Widening Gap Between High School and College Math
- The Disconnect Between the Math Curriculum and Professional Practitioners
- Making Math Relevant: Assessing Reading Comprehension or Math?
- The “Chinese Room”

6. Investing: Wealth for the Future

- Lines versus Exponentials
- The Doubling Rule
- Fixed Growth Rates
- Growth Not Measured in Dollars
- Integrated Fixed-rate Growth
- Changing the Compounding Interval
- Saturation
- Summary
- Mixing Water and Oil

7. Gambling: The Probability Paradox

- Probabilities for Random Sequences
- The Game of Poker
- The Zenith Radio Data
- The Frequency of Improbable Events
- How long is long enough?
- The “Gambler’s Fallacy”
- Probability and Gambling
- Books on Gambling
- Summary
- Music or Noise?

8. Risk Taking: Going Broke to Get Even

- Risk
- Behavioral Finance
- Prospect Theory
- When Bad Bets Are Good
- Insurance
- Mental Accounting
- Summary
- When is a vice a virtue?

**Part III Loans**

9. Borrowing: A Numerical Black Box

- A Black Box
- Monthly Payments on a Loan
- Periodic Finance Rates
- Total Cost of a Loan
- Equity Accrual
- Payments on Intermediate-term Loans
- Total Cost of Intermediate-term Loans
- Total Cost of Short-term Loans
- Summary
- Yo-yo Financing

10. Evaluating Loans: Phantom Finance Charges

- The Effective Interest Rate
- Introductory Teaser Rates for Credit Cards
- The 0 Percent Financing Scam
- Home Mortgages
- 30-year Mortgages
- Accelerated Mortgage Payments
- Bi-weekly Mortgages
- Low Interest Rates versus Low Prices
- Summary
- "We're required to by law."

**Part IV Misunderstood Math**

11. Voting: Number-Dropping

- The Myth that Precise Means Accurate
- Precision
- Accuracy
- Elections and Laws
- Summary
- Negative Taxation

12. Estimating: The Three Sizes of Numbers

- Number Size
- Scientific Notation
- Language and Scientific Notation
- Reasonable Number Sizes
- Number Size and Risk Analysis
- Summary
- Making Sense of Safety

13. Measuring: Is it valid?

- The Signal-to-Noise Ratio
- Signal Averaging
- Correlations and Causes
- Summary
- Metal Legs at the Airport

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