numbers

One through nine are always spelled out, as well as first through ninth. Use numerals for higher numbers: the sixth man, the 106th time the Yankees won, fourth-grade student.

Use numerals for round numbers in the millions and billions: 9 billion seashells; 17 million residents.

Use decimals when numbers are not round: 3.6 million geocaches.

Ages and hours of the day are always numerals. A 3-year-old boy. Sam is 7 years old. The meeting is at 6:00 p.m.

Percentages are also always numerals. Enrollment grew 8 percent in 2010.

Spell numbers out when beginning a sentence. Rewrite the sentence, if necessary. Seventeen students won the spelling bee.

A hyphen should be used between the tens and units number when writing out the numbers twenty-one through ninety-nine in words (beginning a sentence): Three thousand seventy-nine.

Use a hyphen between the numerator and denominator when a fraction is written out and the fraction is an adjective. Two-thirds of the pizza was eaten.

Use numerals for scores, court decisions and legislative votes: a 7–2 win; a 56–44 Senate vote.

Casual expressions are spelled out. He was among a hundred civilians.

Commas are used in numbers more than 1,000, except when referring to SAT scores. Rent is $1,500. Jason scored 1210 on the SAT.


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