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  1. victo

    victo Active Member

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    cannot rephrase

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by victo, Feb 4, 2015.

    Are these okay as punctuated?

    a $2–$5 million a year baseball contract

    a $5,000–$10,000 per year loss

    a $5–$10 a month fee
     
  2. Mckk

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I might substitute "per year" with "annual", and "a month" with "monthly".

    a $5,000–$10,000 annual loss

    a $5–$10 monthly fee

    Anyway I'm not used to writing business/financial English much so hopefully another member of the forum could confirm or give better advice than me :)
     
    lustrousonion likes this.
  3. Catrin Lewis

    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    Who's saying these things and in what context?

    An accountant making a report might say, "Our losses are ranging from $5,000 to $10,000 per annum," but a person in conversation would more likely say, "It's awful, my company's losing ten thousand dollars a year." Or, "There's a fee. Five to ten dollars a month, depending on the services you use." (For amounts that small, you'd definitely spell them out. I'd recommend spelling out the larger numbers, too.)

    Are the ranges part of the phrases you want to express, or are they just there as examples? If the former, leave out the en-dash and use "to" instead, as I did above.
     
  4. victo

    victo Active Member

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    So a "$5,000–$10,000 a year increase in sales" would be better written as "a $5,000–$10,000 annual increase in sales", correct?

    Also:

    "a $3–$5 million a year contract" is better as "$3–$5 million annual contract", yes?

    " a $10–$15 million a year loss in revenues" is better written as "a $10–$15 million annual loss in revenues", correct?

    Please let me know – thank you.
     
  5. Catrin Lewis

    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    Again, what's the context? Meeting minutes or a piece of fiction?
     
  6. Shadowfax

    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    If this is for something financial, I'd prefer "we're projecting a $7,500 a year increase in sales, plus/minus $2,500" or "over the last 5 years sales have increased by 5% on average" or "over the last 5 years sales have increased by annual amounts ranging from $5,000 to $10,000"

    As far as the contract is concerned, "We're quoting for a $3 million a year contract, with a potential further $2 million depending upon extras (which I'd specify)"

    A lot of the time, the variability that you're trying to include wouldn't occur to an accountant because he'd know what the real numbers were, and wouldn't need to quote a range.
     
  7. victo

    victo Active Member

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    Nonfiction.
     
  8. victo

    victo Active Member

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    I’m seeing many entries (in published works at Google Books) where an em dash is used in conjunction with hyphens—in nonfiction, of course. Is this something new in terms of punctuation, or has it been around for a while? (See examples below.)

    a 10–20-pound weight loss
    a 50–60-mile radius
    a 5–6-foot-wide hole
     
  9. victo

    victo Active Member

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    I've noticed that APA style uses a combo of en dashes and hyphens in such phrases; only they abbreviate terms of measurement:

    E.g., 6.1–9.1-m board
    20–30-ft board

    So maybe this form of punctuation holds some viability.
     
  10. Wreybies

    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    It may, but the syntax is so forced. I can see it being obligatory if it were to be part of a column of listed items, but in natural prose within a paragraph I would be compelled to flip the wording so as to avoid the chain of possibly confusing ligature punctuation. That's just me, of course. :)

    Your thread title indicates that you are not free to rephrase these items. Why?
     

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