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A girl wears a mask as she runs with balloons
More or Less
Friday, 1 May 2009
BBC Radio 4, 1330 BST

This week the world was told to get ready for a global flu pandemic.

But with so few firm numbers, how can we predict what to expect?

And has the risk been reported responsibly?

Tim Harford tries to unpick the swine flu numbers.

When I'm 94

Two older men playing with a games console
If we are living longer, will pensions companies cope?

Good news for older listeners: 77 is the new 65.

That is according to a slice of medical folklore recently repeated in the House of Lords.

But how fast is longevity increasing?

And have pensions providers got their sums right?

The evergreen Paul Vickers reports.


Traffic jam
In a jam and no radio warning - what were the odds of that?

More or Less listener Andrew Leith challenged us to calculate the chance of a driver hearing a radio traffic report relevant to his or her journey.

We do the best we can with the help of the Highways Agency and BBC Radio 2's Sally Traffic.

The Formula of Doom

A trader at the New York Stock Exchange
Did the 'Gaussian Copula Function' cause the global economic crisis?

Wired magazine recently blamed the credit crunch on a mathematical formula designed to measure risk in complex financial products.

We have come to know it in this office as The Formula of Doom.

Our tame mathematical finance expert Paul Wilmott explains what went wrong.

BBC Radio 4's More or Less is broadcast on Friday, 1 May at 1330 BST and repeated on Sunday, 3 May at 2000 BST.

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Biologist Steve Jones on swine flu
01 May 09 |  This Week
Q&A: Advice about swine flu
05 May 09 |  Health
Mexico shuts down to control flu
01 May 09 |  Americas
Swine flu: mapping the outbreak
04 Jun 09 |  Americas
The world response to flu crisis
05 May 09 |  Americas
Firms assume increased longevity
22 May 08 |  Business
Warning on pensioners' longevity
18 Feb 08 |  Business
What use are traffic reports?
04 May 09 |  Magazine
Tech that trumps traffic tangles
18 Nov 08 |  Science & Environment


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