Leading indicators
A compendium of revealing stats
by Telis Demos, FORTUNE Magazine reporter

(FORTUNE Magazine) -- Overgrown hedges

$720 billion

Assets under management by the 100 largest hedge funds, according to Alpha's 2006 list - up from $568 billion last year. Goldman Sachs is tops, with a $21 billion fund that grew 85% last year.

Go green, get green

$5,600

Discount on a Toyota Camry Hybrid for some Bank of America employees, who will start receiving a $3,000 cash incentive to buy a hybrid car in addition to the $2,600 federal rebate for the Camry. That brings the cost down to $20,300. BofA is the third FORTUNE 1,000 company to offer a cash-based hybrid incentive.

The bear essentials

9.1 trillion

Number of short positions outstanding on the New York Stock Exchange in the month ending June 15. That's a record high - up from 8.6 trillion positions in May. The Dow was down 5.4% in the same period.

Paying a premium

$238

Increase in the price of drugs for a typical senior - who takes four brand-name prescriptions daily - in the year ending March 15, according to AARP. Meanwhile, the price of generic drugs dropped 0.1% over the same 12 months.

Coal calling

16.4 million

Tons of coal shipped from Wyoming by the Union Pacific railroad in May - an all-time record. The railroads are working to meet increased demand from electric utilities, which say rising natural-gas prices make the use of cheaper coal necessary to keep rates down.  Top of page