Singular or plural ? For something countable but not integer

spirit_hotta

New Member
Cantonese
Dear all,

Thank you for coming in.

I am puzzled with the singular / plural usage when dealing with something countable but may not necessarily an integer.

For example, I know I should use “1 percentage point” and "2 percentage points", but what about 0.9 and 1.1?

What is the theory behind?

Thank you!

SH
 
  • Biffo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    In writing 0.9 and 1.1 percentage points. (plural)

    Some people might say 0.9 of a point.

    There is no theoretical reason. It is just what we say.

    Note

    0.5 points could be said as 'half a point' or as 'point five points' or as 'point five of a point'


    Personally I always write 0.9 points, 1.1 points and say '[zero] point nine points' and 'one point one points'.
     
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    spirit_hotta

    New Member
    Cantonese
    In writing 0.9 and 1.1 percentage points. (plural)

    Some people might say 0.9 of a point.

    There is no theoretical reason. It is just what we say.

    Note

    0.5 points could be said as 'half a point' or as 'point five points' or as 'point five of a point'


    Personally I always write 0.9 points, 1.1 points and say '[zero] point nine points' and 'one point one points'.


    ===================

    OH thank you very much for your reply, Biffo.

    Please forgive my curiosity, the immediate thing popped into my mind after read your reply is, for 0.1, or 0.01 etc, it must be 0.1 point, not 0.1 points, And for figure like 0.61, it will be 0.61 points, right? If I am right, I think I get the logic. Thank you again!
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Even if the (non-integer) number is less than 1 we use plural points, hectares or in general "units". The only time we use point, hectare or "unit" is for the single integer number i.e., 1 hectare etc. Here is another discussion (and it leads to others...:D)
     
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