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Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings [#permalink]

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02 Sep 2012, 20:39

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Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings account on July 1st, 2007. She earns an 8% interest compounded semiannually. The sum of money in the account on December 31st, 2009 is approximately what percent of the initial deposit?

Re: Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings [#permalink]

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03 Sep 2012, 03:09

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pgmat wrote:

Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings account on July 1st, 2007. She earns an 8% interest compounded semiannually. The sum of money in the account on December 31st, 2009 is approximately what percent of the initial deposit?

A. 117% B. 120% C. 121% D. 135% E. 140%

Since Michelle earns 8% interest compounded semiannually, then she earns 4% interest every 6 months.

Now, the simple interest earned in 5 periods (30 months = 5*6 months) would be 4%*5=20%. But, since the interest is compounded every 6 months, then there would be interest earned on interest (very small amount) thus the actual interest earned would be a little bit more than 20%, only answer choice C fits.

But, there will be some interest on the interest, so the solution will be slightly higher. The next higher solution is 121% and the one thereafter is 135%, which is way too high, the solution must be 121%.

Re: Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings [#permalink]

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27 Oct 2013, 22:23

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Re: Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings [#permalink]

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02 Nov 2013, 03:00

Bunuel wrote:

pgmat wrote:

Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings account on July 1st, 2007. She earns an 8% interest compounded semiannually. The sum of money in the account on December 31st, 2009 is approximately what percent of the initial deposit?

A. 117% B. 120% C. 121% D. 135% E. 140%

Since Michelle earns 8% interest compounded semiannually, then she earns 4% interest every 6 months.

Now, the simple interest earned in 5 periods (30 months = 5*6 months) would be 4%*5=20%. But, since the interest is compounded every 6 months, then there would be interest earned on interest (very small amount) thus the actual interest earned would be a little bit more than 20%, only answer choice C fits.

Re: Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings [#permalink]

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02 Nov 2013, 04:42

Expert's post

ronr34 wrote:

Bunuel wrote:

pgmat wrote:

Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings account on July 1st, 2007. She earns an 8% interest compounded semiannually. The sum of money in the account on December 31st, 2009 is approximately what percent of the initial deposit?

A. 117% B. 120% C. 121% D. 135% E. 140%

Since Michelle earns 8% interest compounded semiannually, then she earns 4% interest every 6 months.

Now, the simple interest earned in 5 periods (30 months = 5*6 months) would be 4%*5=20%. But, since the interest is compounded every 6 months, then there would be interest earned on interest (very small amount) thus the actual interest earned would be a little bit more than 20%, only answer choice C fits.

Re: Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings [#permalink]

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04 Sep 2014, 08:14

Paris75,

You are right. This should be 8% annual interest compound semi-annually. Then only we can say that it is 4% six monthly. Even I am surprised how they have imagined 8% interest compounded semiannually to be 4%. While it should be 8% which gives an answer as 140%. It must be wrong as per the given language.

Re: Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings [#permalink]

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19 Dec 2014, 04:25

Compound interest is always sightly greater than Simple interest. If we consider the above case for simple interest then we have 8 percent simple interest for 2 and 1/2 years so if we consider the amount to be 100 the amount after 2.5 years comes as follows 100*8*2.5/100=20 so amount =120 out of the options A and B are out as they are less and equal respectively options D and E are way larger s option C =121% fits the bill. Hope this one helps.

Re: Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings [#permalink]

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11 Oct 2015, 22:13

Bunuel wrote:

pgmat wrote:

Michelle deposited a certain sum of money in a savings account on July 1st, 2007. She earns an 8% interest compounded semiannually. The sum of money in the account on December 31st, 2009 is approximately what percent of the initial deposit?

A. 117% B. 120% C. 121% D. 135% E. 140%

Since Michelle earns 8% interest compounded semiannually, then she earns 4% interest every 6 months.

Now, the simple interest earned in 5 periods (30 months = 5*6 months) would be 4%*5=20%. But, since the interest is compounded every 6 months, then there would be interest earned on interest (very small amount) thus the actual interest earned would be a little bit more than 20%, only answer choice C fits.

It seems that the question is missing a vital information. Should it not mention if 8% is the annual interest because as per the existing language it seems to be 8% as interest for 6 months?

Please suggest how should it be read for future reference. Till now I have taken it as interest for 6 months instead of an year if the same language is used.

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