Correlation does not equal causation. Sift through some data sets, and you’ll find all sorts of statistics that can be mapped onto each other. Here we demonstrate that two things can appear connected purely by chance or by some entirely separate factor. The chart is technically accurate. But remember: correlation doesn’t equal causation.

Suicides by Alcohol
correlates with
Cost for 16oz of potato chips (unadjusted)

1999200020012002200320042005
Suicides by alcohol
Deaths (US) (CDC)
24212626343535
Cost for 16oz of potato chips (unadjusted)
Dollars per pound (Bureau of Labor)
3.353.463.413.654.484.654.74
Correlation: 0.957817

 

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