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AP style: Numerals, dates, times. By the numbers. Basic rule – Spell out whole numbers below 10, use figures for 10 and above. For example: Each person was given three pencils. The entire class received a 30-count box. Sentence start.

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by the numbers
By the numbers
  • Basic rule – Spell out whole numbers below 10, use figures for 10 and above.
  • For example: Each person was given three pencils. The entire class received a 30-count box.
sentence start
Sentence start
  • Spell out numbers if they are used at the start of a sentence.
  • Thirty-eight geese were tagged by the researchers.
  • Exception: If a calendar year is used at the start of the sentence, we use a numeral.- 2009 was not a productive year for the business.
  • Always use figures.
  • An 8-year-old boy. The 37-year-old pitcher.
  • Use hyphens for ages expressed as adjectives before a noun or as substitutes for a noun.
  • A 5-year-old boy, but the boy is 5 years old. The boy, 7, has a sister, 10.
  • The race is for 3-year-olds.
  • The woman is in her 30s. (No apostrophe)
  • Use figures for percent and percentages.-1 percent
  • Use decimals, not fractions – 2.5 percent.
  • For amounts less than one percent, use a zero in front of the decimal.- The cost of living rose 0.6 percent.
  • Use figures and the dollar sign in all uses except casual references or amounts without a figure.
  • Admission to the concert is $12. A 12-pack of Coca Cola costs $4.50. The new coach’s contract is for $325,000 annually.
  • For amounts of more than $1 million, use up to two decimal places. - The building cost $5.25 million.
  • Use figures and spell out inches, feet, yards, etc. to indicate depth, height, length and width.
  • Hyphenate when used to modify a noun.
  • He is 5 feet 6 inches tall. The 5-foot-6-inch man.
  • The area received 5 inches of snow Tuesday.
  • The building has 6,000 square feet of floor space.
  • Use figures for all except zero. Use a word, not a minus sign, to indicate a temperature below zero.- It was sunny and 67 at the park.- The day’s low was minus 10. OR- The day’s low as 10 below zero.
  • Temperatures get higher or lower, but they don’t get warmer or cooler.
  • Only abbreviate Ave., Blvd. and St. when used with a numbered address.- The home is on Smith Avenue.- The home is located at 1215 Smith Ave.
  • Never abbreviate road, alley, drive, terrace or any other address.
  • Capitalize when part of a formal name without a number. Lowercase when used alone or with two or more names.
  • Use figures except for noon or midnight.
  • Use a.m. and p.m. Not in the morning or in the afternoon.- Lunch service starts at 11:45 a.m.- Class begins at 6:30 p.m.
  • For 12 p.m., use noon. For 12 a.m., use midnight. Just noon or midnight.
  • Do not write 12 noon or 12 midnight – those are redundant.
dates and months
Dates and months
  • Capitalize the names of months in all uses.
  • When a month is used with a specific date, abbreviate the following months: Jan., Feb., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov. and Dec.- He was born on Aug. 9, 1990.- The trip starts May 12.- The bus trip is planned from Nov. 12-15.- The coldest month of the year was January.
  • Number only. No th or rd or anything after the number.