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B, D and E can be eliminated since they are irrelevant to the argument.
Answer choice C is more like a conclusion rather than assumption. If you read carefully, if paid sick leaves are removed by company, fewer employees would take off from work because of illness. That is basically a result if the company adopts this policy. Hence cant be an assumption.
Regarding A - If reduction in benefits of employees is not going to affect the downturn of employees, then as author have mentioned, company can increase the performance by eliminating paid sick leave.
If employees decide to leave company because of this strategy, it will affect the company performance in wrong sense. Hence A is a correct answer choice.
For me it was between A and E becuase only those 2 options talk about the company as a whole. E says "reduction in the number of paid sick days" whereas argument talks about elimination of paid sick days.
Thanks guys ! I picked this question from Princeton Review. I believe the OA should be A.
Negate C should destroy the argument - opposite of NONE is "one" or more. Logical negative C . If ONE paid sick leave were offered, fewer employees would take time off from work because of illness. ----> This doesn't seem to destroy the argument. Hence cannot be the answer.
Here we are talking about the resulting decrease in absenteeism resulting in a positive effect so A can not be the answer. We only care about the people who are employees so even if people left the company it would not affect the argument.
The OA is right in my line of reasoning. Here are some insights. Conclusion - resulting decrease in absenteeism would have a positive effect in company's performance. Here the key words "would have" bring in cause and effect relationship in the conclusion itself. Note this is an assumption question and not a strengthen question. We always strengthen the conclusion in a strengthen question and this is not true for all assumptions question types.
Let me go one step ahead telling that a successful assumption can be a link itself between argument and conclusion. Here choice C nicely brings out this link. -> If No paid sick leave were offered, fewer employees would take time off from work because of illness.
Next broadly there are two kinds of assumptions. One type is active assumption where outside information is not allowed and one needs to think inside the box. This means we cann't bring in outside information unlike strengtheners can.However passive assumptions can be in the form of 'NOT' key word and bring in outside information. This problem is certainly not of passive assumption type, hence can be classified in active assumption category.
Answer A goes thru a lot of steps before it can even reach closer to conclusion. Let me explain. Benefits will decrease -> still employees will stay -> they will continue to perform at their predefined productivity levels -> company performance won't suffer. I have never seen a problem being correct with so many logical steps.