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Facts and Figures

11.7.2018, , Zdroj: Verlag Dashöfer

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Facts and Figures

Edward Thomas

1. FACTS AND FIGURES

There are quite a lot of ways to bring facts and figures into our dealings with others. Look at the short table with verbs and nouns below - can you make suitable phrases which are ways of presenting information to people? In this case each verb has an ideal partner in one of the nouns - but they need to be correctly linked.

verbs nouns
1. show someone a) statistics
2. quote b) a puzzle
3. explain c) main points
4. highlight d) a graph

Correct answers are here1

In fact there are many more words we could use, and we could pair the above verbs in several ways if we really wanted to. There are small differences in language use though.

For example:„quote” is mostly used with written or verbal data - show would be used with visual aids like graphs, tables, and charts.

You may learn the differences between them, which may be grammatical as well as in meaning, but first you need to recognise them. Look at the table below which shows synonymous words. Can you find the synonyms? You may need your dictionary!

1. quote a) demonstrate
2. analyse b) cite
3. show c) emphasise
4. highlight d) show why
5. focus on e) see
6. notice f) point out
7. underline g) examine
8. explain h) evaluate

Correct answers are here2

Again, just be careful when you use these words. We could use the sentence „you can see” but we would be unlikely to say „you can notice”- even though notice and see can be synonyms. We don't usually use „notice” with modal verbs like „can” to show ability to do something. We might use it with „will”. For example: „looking at the graph, you will notice...” etc.

2. DATA PRESENTATION

Look at the presentation below by Alistair Sweetheart, leading economic minister of a major western government. Supply the missing verbs from Facts and Figures. Most of the time one letter is given to help direct you to the right word or phrase.

If we look at the chart above, you will 1. …………………………… 3 that the figures for public borrowing are very high. However, I would like to 2. …………………………… 4 the fact that this is part of a cycle of borrowing and that the cycle will reverse over time. Tax receipts, I would 3. ……………………………,5 are lower at the moment because, as you can 4. …………………………… from the graph beside the chart, consumer spending has plummeted in recent months, reaching, I would like to 5. …………………………… ……………………………,6 an all time low. That in part 6. …………………………… why Government debt is so high, and it 7. …………………………… …………………………… we are acting to raise taxes dramatically - with terrible political effects. In fact, my government's popularity has reached dangerously low levels. To 8. …………………………… 7one commentator: „government's poll numbers have fallen by 25% in one year- not a bad record!”. Well, I could 9. …………………………… many more commentators like that as well! Now I would like us to 10. …………………………… …………………………… 8 a graph which 11. …………………………… 9 just how bad things are. If we 12. …………………………… 10 it in detail, we can see that real levels of debt are much higher than I might have told everyone before - they have rocketed up by 79% in the last year! This 13. …………………………… 11 that the economy is really in a very bad situation. I have been 14. …………………………… 12 in the situation for a long time and I have taken time to 15. ……………………………13 the data and I should know! On the whole, this whole situation 16. …………………………… 14 the need to elect competent and experienced politicians like myself for at least the next decade or two.

Thank you for you attention, ladies and gentlemen.

Correct answers are here15

Exit questions:

1. Does „plummet” mean a) rise quickly or b) fall quickly?

2. Does „raise dramatically” mean a) „to increase something rapidly” or b) „to decrease something moderately” ?

Correct answers are here16

3. UPS AND DOWNS - DESCRIBING TRENDS

In Data Presentation we saw Alistair Sweetheart talking about trends. There is a lot of language to describe this. It is especially used to describe the stock markets. Here we will expand our range of vocabulary to describe trends.

Look at the verbs in the box below. Can you find the antonyms for them and put them in the sentences which follow? Some antonyms are given under the exercise.

A) fall, plummet, improve, go up, raise, bottom out, get better, slow down

1. Petrol consumption is …………………………… all the time due to increased car ownership.

2. The housing market …………………………… in 2003. Now it's falling back down from that high point.

3. The situation in the North of Sudan has …………………………… as fighting has increased.

4. It is likely that interest rates will …………………………… …………………………… to encourage consumer spending.

5. As you can see, the state of public finances has been …………………………… …………………………… recently - from €18bn debt to €29bn.

6. The European Central Bank is very likely to …………………………… interest rates to help highstreet shops.

7. The rate of repossession of houses has been …………………………… …………………………… over the last three months. There are more and more every day.

8. Share prices in P & P have …………………………… after suggestions that they could be taken over.

________________________________________________________________________________

deteriorate, peak, rocket, speed up, lower

Correct answers are here17

B)

Now look at the sentences below, and match the highlighted words to the definitions that follow them.

1. After strong growth, the market in washing machines seems to be levelling off. What we are seeing is not zero growth, but less than before.

2. Essentially our position in the market is stable - we're not rising or falling.

3. It looks like our profits hit the bottom last year - that was terrible - but they're above that now.

4. Our growth this year has been steady, but not spectacular. So we're in a strong position but we're not drinking champagne every evening.

5. Things were pretty slow, but now the economy is really picking up - we're optimistic for the future.

1. This is a synonym for „reasonable”. So if things are quite good, ie. growing but not special, we can use this adjective to describe them.