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# A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan

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A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan  [#permalink]

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Updated on: 24 Sep 2018, 06:53
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A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool company has recently claimed that the company is mismanaged, citing as evidence the company's failure to slow production in response to a recent rise in its inventory of finished products. It is doubtful whether an investor's sniping at management can ever be anything other than counterproductive, but in this case it is clearly not justified. It is true that an increased inventory of finished products often indicates that production is outstripping demand, but in Burton's case it indicates no such thing. Rather, the increase in inventory is entirely attributable to products that have already been assigned to orders received from customers.

In the argument given, the two boldfaced portions play which of the following roles?

(A) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides evidence to undermine the support for the position being opposed.

(B) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second is evidence that has been used to support the position being opposed.

(C) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.

(D) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides information to undermine the force of that evidence.

(E) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.

Verbal Question of The Day: Day 267: Critical Reasoning

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Originally posted by linker on 04 Oct 2004, 22:09.
Last edited by Bunuel on 24 Sep 2018, 06:53, edited 6 times in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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Re: A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan  [#permalink]

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17 Apr 2018, 21:11
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As with any boldface (BF) question, we want to first analyze the argument without paying any attention to the bold face. The conclusion is a bit tricky to identify, so let's review the argument, rearranging it somewhat to illustrate the logic:

• There has been a recent rise in Burton's inventory of finished products.
• An increased inventory of finished products often indicates that production is outstripping demand.
• Despite the increase in inventory, Burton has not slowed production.

Based on this evidence, the prominent investor claims that the company is mismanaged. After all, if production is outstripping demand, shouldn't Burton slow production? But this is not the whole story...

• In Burton's case, the increase in inventory is entirely attributable to products that have already been assigned to orders received from customers.
• This implies that Burton's production is NOT outstripping demand and that there is no reason to slow production. This undermines the evidence cited by the investor (evidence supporting the investor's position that the company is mismanaged).
• Therefore, the investor's criticism of management is clearly not justified (author's conclusion).

Now that we understand the conclusion and the argument, let's take a look at the boldfaced portions:

• "the company is mismanaged" - This is the position of the prominent investor, not the author.
• "in this case [the investor's sniping at management] is clearly not justified" - The author concludes that the investor's claim is not justified.

Which answer choice best describes the role of the boldfaced portions?

Quote:
(A) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides evidence to undermine the support for the position being opposed.

The 1st BF portion is the position of the prominent investor. The author opposes that position, so the first half of (A) looks good. The 2nd BF portion is not evidence. Instead, it is simply the author's position/conclusion. By itself, this statement does not undermine support for investor's position. The second half of (A) is inaccurate, so eliminate this one.

Quote:
(B) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second is evidence that has been used to support the position being opposed.

As in choice (A), the first half of (B) looks good. But, again, the 2nd BF portion is not evidence. Also, this statement in no way supports the investor's position. Instead, the 2nd BF portion is simply the author's conclusion (that the investor's claim is not justified). Eliminate (B).

Quote:
(C) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.

As in (A) and (B), the first half of (C) looks good. The 2nd BF portion is the author's conclusion, so the second half of (C) looks good too. Choice (C) accurately expresses the roles of the two boldfaced portions, so keep this one.

Quote:
(D) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides information to undermine the force of that evidence.

The 1st BF portion, "the company is mismanaged", is the position of the prominent investor, not evidence to support the investor's position. The evidence cited to support that position is "the company's failure to slow production in response to a recent rise in its inventory of finished products", and this portion is not boldfaced.

The 2nd BF portion does not undermine the evidence cited above ("the company's failure to slow production in response to a recent rise in its inventory of finished products"). Stating that the investor's sniping was not justified does not, by itself, undermine the evidence. Rather, the 2nd BF portion is the conclusion of the author's argument. Eliminate (D).

Quote:
(E) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.

The 1st BF portion is not evidence supporting the investor's position. Instead, it is simply the investor's position. The second half of (E) is okay, but since the first is inaccurate, (E) must be eliminated.

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Re: A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan  [#permalink]

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24 Oct 2013, 20:09
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A The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides evidence to undermine the support for the position being opposed.--- The first statement is correct, but the second statement is not an evidence.

B The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second is evidence that has been used to support the position being opposed.--- Same as A. Second statement is not evidence.

C The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.--- CORRECT.

D The first is evidence that has been used to SMPPort a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides information to undermine the force of that evidence.--- The first is not an evidence but just something the investor claims.

E The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.---- The first statement is not an evidence but this what the investor claims.
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Re: A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan  [#permalink]

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25 May 2017, 05:23
1
A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool company has recently claimed that the company is mismanaged, citing as evidence the company's failure to slow production in response to a recent rise in its inventory of finished products. It is doubtful whether an investor's sniping at management can ever be anything other than counterproductive, but in this case it is clearly not justified. It is true that an increased inventory of finished products often indicates that production is outstripping demand, but in Burton's case it indicates no such thing. Rather, the increase in inventory is entirely attributable to products that have already been assigned to orders received from customers.

In the argument given, the two boldfaced portions play which of the following roles?

(A) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides evidence to undermine the support for the position being opposed.
(B) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second is evidence that has been used to support the position being opposed.
(C) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.
(D) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides information to undermine the force of that evidence.
(E) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.

GMATNinjaTwo Could you help to assist to analyse this question? Does the word "clearly" is a hint for the conclusion? Perhaps you could provide the explanations for the transition word in this argument. I have a hard time to identify the conclusion of the argument. Thank you.
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Re: A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan  [#permalink]

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25 May 2017, 10:38
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hazelnut wrote:
A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool company has recently claimed that the company is mismanaged, citing as evidence the company's failure to slow production in response to a recent rise in its inventory of finished products. It is doubtful whether an investor's sniping at management can ever be anything other than counterproductive, but in this case it is clearly not justified. It is true that an increased inventory of finished products often indicates that production is outstripping demand, but in Burton's case it indicates no such thing. Rather, the increase in inventory is entirely attributable to products that have already been assigned to orders received from customers.

In the argument given, the two boldfaced portions play which of the following roles?

(A) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides evidence to undermine the support for the position being opposed.
(B) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second is evidence that has been used to support the position being opposed.
(C) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.
(D) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides information to undermine the force of that evidence.
(E) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.

GMATNinjaTwo Could you help to assist to analyse this question? Does the word "clearly" is a hint for the conclusion? Perhaps you could provide the explanations for the transition word in this argument. I have a hard time to identify the conclusion of the argument. Thank you.

Hi hazelnut ,

My two cents here brother

Always remember the marker words to determine the conclusion or the premise. Some of these markers for conclusion are clearly, therefore, hence, thus, claimed, etc.

For premises, we have Since, because, the reason is, etc.

Now, in this question we have two claims:

1. The prominent investor claim. "the company is mismanaged"
2. The author's claim stated by the word clearly . "in this case it is clearly not justified".

Now, you to determine which is a conclusion and which is a premise:

You can always use AB test.

Is A because of B? --> Then A is the conclusion

Is B because of A.? --> Then B is the conclusion.

Other than this, try to find out what the author is trying to say and then what he has used as an extra information to prove his point. The extra information will be the premise and the author's point will be the conclusion.
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Re: A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan  [#permalink]

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25 May 2017, 19:10
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merajul wrote:
I got confused between C & D. Can anybody help

Quote:
(C) the first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.
(D) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides information to undermine the force of that evidence.

Here's the argument, rearranged somewhat:

• There has been a recent rise in Burton's inventory of finished products.
• An increased inventory of finished products often indicates that production is outstripping demand.
• But, in Burton's case, the increase in inventory is entirely attributable to products that have already been assigned to orders received from customers.
• This implies that Burton's production is NOT outstripping demand and that there is no reason to slow production. This undermines the evidence cited by the investor, in support of the investor's position that the company is mismanaged.
• Therefore, the investor's criticism of management is clearly not justified (conclusion).

The first boldfaced section, "the company is mismanaged", is the position of the prominent investor, not evidence to support the investor's position. The evidence cited to support that position is "the company's failure to slow production in response to a recent rise in its inventory of finished products", and this portion is not boldfaced.

The second boldfaced section, "in this case [the investor's sniping at management] is clearly not justified", does not undermine the evidence cited above ("the company's failure to slow production in response to a recent rise in its inventory of finished products"). Stating that the investor's sniping was not justified does not, by itself, undermine the evidence. Rather, the second portion is the conclusion of the author's argument.

Thus, choice (C) accurately expresses the roles of the two boldfaced portions.
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A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan  [#permalink]

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06 Aug 2018, 17:38
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souvik101990 wrote:

Verbal Question of The Day: Day 267: Critical Reasoning

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A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool company has recently claimed that the company is mismanaged, citing as evidence the company's failure to slow production in response to a recent rise in its inventory of finished products. It is doubtful whether an investor's sniping at management can ever be anything other than counterproductive, but in this case it is clearly not justified. It is true that an increased inventory of finished products often indicates that production is outstripping demand, but in Burton's case it indicates no such thing. Rather, the increase in inventory is entirely attributable to products that have already been assigned to orders received from customers.

In the argument given, the two boldfaced portions play which of the following roles?

(A) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides evidence to undermine the support for the position being opposed.

(B) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second is evidence that has been used to support the position being opposed.

(C) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.

(D) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides information to undermine the force of that evidence.

(E) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole.

For boldfaced questions, students must be sure to generically summarize the roles that each part plays BEFORE examining the answer choices. Otherwise, it is much more difficult to determine the correct answer.

So here's my generic summary:
The first boldfaced part describes the TYPICAL cause of a certain situation (i.e., the typical reason for increased inventory).
The second boldfaced part explains that the ACTUAL cause of the current situation is different from the TYPICAL cause.

Once we have used generic language to describe the roles, we need only check the answer choices to locate the answer choice that matches our description of the rules.

When we do that, we see that the only match is answer choice A.

Cheers,
Brent
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Re: A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan  [#permalink]

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01 Jun 2019, 12:37

Investor (opposing) argument: premise: company didn't react to increased inventory -> company mismanaged

Main Argument: Premise: increase in inventory = for existing orders -> company didn't need to pull back production -> investor's claim isn't justified

The tricky thing here is that mid-way it sounds like there's a larger theme being presented that investor's gripes aren't productive, which can sound like the argument's main position. HOWEVER, by mapping out what the supporting evidence all points towards, you realize that the main claim is actually why the company isn't mismanaged.

In the argument given, the two boldfaced portions play which of the following roles?

(A) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides evidence to undermine the support for the position being opposed. the first does state the position the argument opposes, the second is the main position though, not evidence -> eliminate

(B) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second is evidence that has been used to support the position being opposed. the first does that; the second does not provide evidence to support the 1st, if anything it opposes the first

(C) The first states the position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole. the first does that; the second is the conclusion -> WINNER

(D) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second provides information to undermine the force of that evidence. the first is the position, the second claims the first is wrong, but the following statements are the evidence

(E) The first is evidence that has been used to support a position that the argument as a whole opposes; the second states the conclusion of the argument as a whole. the first is the position not the evidence, the second does what it says
Re: A prominent investor who holds a large stake in the Burton Tool compan   [#permalink] 01 Jun 2019, 12:37
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