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GMAT Pill Representative
Joined: 14 Apr 2009
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26 Aug 2013, 18:45
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Difficulty:

55% (hard)

Question Stats:

63% (02:13) correct 37% (01:50) wrong based on 388 sessions

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Canadian mining company Bre-X had soil samples from its Busang project examined for gold content in 1992. The positive news of gold being present attracted a range of investors - from unsophisticated individuals to saavy mining professionals - to invest in the Busang project. After years of successful promotion, the truth about this worthless property slowly emerged early in 1997 and drove Bre-X stock prices nearly to zero. A repeat analysis of the soil in 1997 indicated very low gold content. Thus the methods used to determine the gold content in 1992 must have been inaccurate.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?

(A) The gold content of the soil in Busang was much lower in 1997 than it was in 1992.

(B) After 1992, Bre-X was not mining in the same areas of Busang that the sample was taken from.

(C) The methods used to assess gold content of the soil samples in 1992 were different from those generally used during that time.

(D) Bre-X did not have soil samples from any other Busang property examined for gold content.

(E) Gold was not added to the soil samples collected by Bre-X before the samples were examined.

Original Source: Practice Pill Platform
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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26 Aug 2013, 19:15
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GMATPill wrote:
Canadian mining company Bre-X had soil samples from its Busang project examined for gold content in 1992. The positive news of gold being present attracted a range of investors - from unsophisticated individuals to saavy mining professionals - to invest in the Busang project. After years of successful promotion, the truth about this worthless property slowly emerged early in 1997 and drove Bre-X stock prices nearly to zero. A repeat analysis of the soil in 1997 indicated very low gold content. Thus the methods used to determine the gold content in 1992 must have been inaccurate.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?

(A) The gold content of the soil in Busang was much lower in 1997 than it was in 1992.

(B) After 1992, Bre-X was not mining in the same areas of Busang that the sample was taken from.

(C) The methods used to assess gold content of the soil samples in 1992 were different from those generally used during that time.

(D) Bre-X did not have soil samples from any other Busang property examined for gold content.

(E) Gold was not added to the soil samples collected by Bre-X before the samples were examined.

Conclusion: Thus the methods used to determine the gold content in 1992 must have been inaccurate.

Premise: Conflicting predictions of gold content in 1992 and 1997

Pre-thinking: The author is strongly blaming the Method to be inaccurate. So anything in the answer choices which helps us support that the METHOD is the only one which is INACCURATE and not anything else affecting the protocol would be the correct answer

POE

A- if the gold content was lower in 1997 than in 1992-it supports the fact the method was accurate in estimating gold in 1992
B- If they were no mining in the same area, it does not affect the conclusion of methods being inaccurate
C- If the methods were different, again the methods could have different sensitivity ranges to estimate gold content and still being accurate in its own ways
D- Even if there were soil samples not analyzed from different Busang properties, it cannot verify the accuracies of any method
E- Now, if the Gold was not added to the soil samples before estimation in 1992, it gives support to the fact that it was the method and nothing in the protocol which led to inaccurate results.

negating E- gold was ADDED to the soil sample destroys the conclusion that it was the addition of gold prior to the analysis which led to inaccurate results and not the method per say!

hence E

Waiting official explanation from Gmat-pill

thanks
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27 Aug 2013, 02:12
Difficult question for me, GMAT-pill waiting for official explanation.
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27 Aug 2013, 07:46
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doesnt look like a good question. GmatPill please give us the explanation.
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27 Aug 2013, 08:40
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Premises:
1992, Project X = soil samples were examined for gold content --> good result.
1997, other soil samples were examined again, proving that inadequate gold content.

Conclusion: methods employed to determine gold content in 1992 is inaccurate

Prethinking: Assumption is that the soil samples must be representative of the population
OR the gold content is equally distributed in the mine.

Hence, the company did not distort the soil samples by adding gold into.

-->E
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27 Aug 2013, 19:32
Agree why E is correct ans. However, even B seems correct.

Mining could have led to decrease in gold content. How can B be ruled out?
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27 Aug 2013, 20:53
Answer (B) provides another explanation to the finding which seriously weakens the argument. The correct answer choice for this question has to be the "defender" assumption by stating that the ONLY explanation to this is the method used was inaccurate.
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01 Aug 2014, 05:22
Blasted by the question and stunned to silence by options and OA

Regards
Siva
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23 Apr 2016, 10:43
The answer has to be option E. Looks straight forward
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