This is the time when we make lists. The best movies of 2014. The best books. The funniest cartoons. The greatest photos. The most amazing sports performances. The 10 best botched athlete celebrations. (No kidding, The Washington Post ran that.) Not to be outdone, here's my contribution: The year's best statistics.

Below you will find 15 in no particular order. To be candid, I outsourced the hard work to my friend Ben Beach, a numbers buff who keeps a running tab of intriguing stats. Included in the list are numbers applying to 2014 and numbers announced in 2014. Of the 15 stats, eight come from Ben, the remainder from me. Ben's are the most interesting.

• Nine percent of Americans carry no cash, and half carry $20 or less.