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A jewelry dealer initially offered a bracelet for sale at an

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CIO
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A jewelry dealer initially offered a bracelet for sale at an [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 06:48
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A
B
C
D
E

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A jewelry dealer initially offered a bracelet for sale at an asking price that would give a profit to the dealer of 40 percent of the original cost. What was the original cost of the bracelet?

1) After reducing this asking price by 10 percent, the jewelry dealer sold the bracelet at a profit of $403.

2) The jewelry dealer sold the bracelet for $1,953.

**please post your answer, and the time it took you to do it, BUT NOT YOUR WORK. Give people a chance to do it on their own...
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 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 08:52
with hesitation I will go with (E)...

Took me 03:10... :cry:

Ian, I would like to discuss this one (On how to improve timing...) Please..
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 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 08:56
Ian, Forgot to Thank You..

Your previous Tip was very useful... Thanks again... It will definitely improve my timing for some "% and ratio" problems.
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 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 10:31
2.25m
word 'initially' in the question bothers me.
can we assume that in B he sold the product at a 40% markup? If that's the case, the answer is D.
If not, then it's A.

I put A b/c we don't know what the final mark-up % is in a case of B.

what's the OA?
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 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 11:17
2mins 45 secs...

Its B...

======================================
Let Y be original price...X be selling price...so Y=1.4 X

per 1 ---- 0.9X = Y + 403 ( Not Sufficient )
per 2 ---- Y=1953..so X can be determined from Y=1.4X

Am I missing out something here??

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Sorry [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 11:18
Sorry Ian, Overlooked your Note at the bottom...
If my answer is wrong I am saved :wink:
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 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 12:32
D.

Asking price C Original price x

Questionstemgives c=1.4X

1. 0.9C =x+430 hence 1.4(0.9)x = x+430 suff
2. c= somevalue suff
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 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 13:52
Quote:
2.25m
word 'initially' in the question bothers me.
can we assume that in B he sold the product at a 40% markup? If that's the case, the answer is D.
If not, then it's A.

I put A b/c we don't know what the final mark-up % is in a case of B.


Good job, lastochka!

I think this is a great problem to help understand Data Sufficiency. Read this whole thing (I know it's long). There's a lesson down towards the bottom somewhere.

The word "initially" is key here. If he sold it for $1953, how do we know it's still 40% discount?

The first one definately does work:

If C is the original cost, then the original asking price would have been 1.4C (40% more than C). But since he reduced that by 10%, we can say .9(1.4C) is the amount he did sell it for. That, minus his cost, = 403:
.9(1.4C) - C = 403.

So with one variable we can solve the problem.

Now, on to number 2.

Let's say you ignored the word "initially". Taken in a vacuum, number 2 should be enough too. Of course if we know what he sold it for, we should be able to write: 1.4C=1953.

And since we've already dismissed number 1 as correct, and since we're following the classic "If A then A or D" approach to data sufficiency, we block out number 1 and say that number 2 is enough, too, so it's got to be D.

BUT WAIT

In number one, HE DID REDUCE THE PRICE BY 10% MORE! Where is that information in number 2? Can we possibly know that?

Remember, and this is the major point of this question: The data sufficiency statements will NEVER contradict themselves. If he reduced it by 10% in the first one, he MUST have reduced it by 10% in the second one. But there's no mention of it. So we should be forced to say, "huh! Is this a further reduced price?" Which would make you read the question again and see the word "initially," which should make you think, "Nope, there's no way to know what the story is with this one."

So the answer has to be A.

Want proof? Do the math in the first two:

1) .9(1.4C) - C = 403
C = 1550

If that was his cost, and he made $403, then he sold it for $1953, exactly the number that's written in number 2.

If we did the math in number 2 without taking the "initially" into account, the cost would have been $1395, and the profit would have been $558. That doesn't match with number 1, so somewhere he must have changed the price.

So. What do we learn? We've been able to use information from Statement 1 to help us decide what to do with Statement 2. That doesn't mean we're going to choose C. It can't be that, because the answer's A. But please remember that in the GMAT, every piece of every question is information, and that's information you can use to figure out what to do with different parts of the problem. Use the statments against themselves!

They won't contradict each other. If you know that, you've gained some real power over the GMAT.

By the way, this is a real question, word for word, published in some old book I've got.
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 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 20:26
Ian,
Do we really have to read so much into one word on the real test. I thought when DS said Each answer in itself is to be considered ,that the other options are to be completely ignored and each alternative is to be considered as the next logical step right after the problem statement and assume nothing is to be implied.

so D still seems reasonable to me (although I mistyped it as C)

regards
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 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2004, 23:23
Short answer: yes, you do.

Longer answer: this shouldn't worry you, it should empower you. The rules do say that you should check each one independent of the other one, but they're both referring to the same question. So they have to be talking about the same thing.

The word "initially" is a key word here, and in this problem, absent number one completely, number 2 would still be wrong. I know why you'd think it's not, but if he initially offered at 40% markup, and sold it for $1953, then you can't know if there was more bargaining down the road or not. So 2 is definately not enough information.

But keep in mind we're not using number 1 in conjuntion with number 2. That would be C. What we're doing is learning more about the deal from number 1 and then asking if we know the same information in number 2. That should be empowering, because you'll be seeing more than the average test taker if you look at it like that.

So think about it as you do practice problems, especially from the OG. You'll see that trend, and soon it'll become more natural.
  [#permalink] 21 Jul 2004, 23:23
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