Quandaries
and Queries 

Hi, If I had
sales in January of 2002 that were $42,493.73 and sales that were $37,281.59. The
difference is $5374.50. What is the percentage
of decrease in sales? Thank you so much. 

Hi Linda, As I understand your question, your sales in January 2002 were $42,493.73 and in January 2003 they were $37,281.59. To find the percentage change, whether it is an increase or a decrease, you need first to express the change as a fraction of where you started. You started in 2002 with sales of $42,493.73 and had a change of $5374.50 in January 2003. Thus the change, as a fraction of the sales in January 2002 is ^{5374.50}/_{42493.73} = 0.1265 To exprress this as a percentage multiply by 100 to get 12.65%. Since $37,281.59 is smaller than $42,493.73 you can say there was a 12.65% decrease in sales from January 2002 to January 2003. Penny 

