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# An economic recession can result from

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An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 07:04
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Question Stats:

24% (02:49) correct 76% (01:36) wrong based on 227 sessions

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This one nailed me today, I rarely get SC wrong. I will love if any of the Manhattan Instructors will pitch in and explain the OA to the maximum possible extent.

1. especially the use of "which"
2. I believe option C has SV disagreement since "cycle" is singular and should use "leads".

People,
please use your judgement not mine !

Reopening the question.
An economic recession can result from a lowering of
employment rates triggered by a drop in investment, which
causes people to cut consumer spending and starts a cycle of
layoffs leading back to even lower employment rates
.
• a lowering of employment rates triggered by a drop in
investment, which causes people to cut consumer spending
and start a cycle of layoffs leading back to even lower
employment rates.
• a lowering of employment rates triggered by dropping
investment, which causes people to cut consumer spending
and starts a cycle of layoffs leading back to even lower
employment rates.
• falling employment rates triggered by a drop in investment,
which cause cutbacks in consumer spending, starting a
cycle of layoffs that lead to even lower employment rates.
• falling employment rates that are triggered by a drop in
investment, causing people to cut consumer spending and
starting a cycle of layoffs that lead back to even lower
employment rates.
• falling employment rates that are triggered by a drop in
investment, causing cutbacks in consumer spending and
starting a cycle of layoffs leading to even lower employment
rates.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 08:04
nusmavrik wrote:
This one nailed me today, I rarely get SC wrong. I will love if any of the Manhattan Instructors will pitch in and explain the OA to the maximum possible extent.

1. especially the use of "which"
2. I believe option C has SV disagreement since "cycle" is singular and should use "leads".

People,
please use your judgement not mine !

Reopening the question.
An economic recession can result from a lowering of
employment rates triggered by a drop in investment, which
causes people to cut consumer spending and starts a cycle of
layoffs leading back to even lower employment rates
.
• a lowering of employment rates triggered by a drop in
investment, which causes people to cut consumer spending
and start a cycle of layoffs leading back to even lower
employment rates.
• a lowering of employment rates triggered by dropping
investment, which causes people to cut consumer spending
and starts a cycle of layoffs leading back to even lower
employment rates.
• falling employment rates triggered by a drop in investment,
which cause cutbacks in consumer spending, starting a
cycle of layoffs that lead to even lower employment rates.
• falling employment rates that are triggered by a drop in
investment, causing people to cut consumer spending and
starting a cycle of layoffs that lead back to even lower
employment rates.
• falling employment rates that are triggered by a drop in
investment, causing cutbacks in consumer spending and
starting a cycle of layoffs leading to even lower employment
rates.

In A & B & C, "which" is used wrongly. Also "causing people" not sounds good to me. "D" was ok, but "causing people to" disturbs me. Not sure about my theory, but in such tough problems, every one has a valid view.

So "E" for me.
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 08:12
I b/w E & C.

(A) lowering of employment rates is wrong .unidiomatic. ELIMINATE

(B) lowering of employment rates is wrong .unidiomatic. ELIMINATE

(D) how can people cut consumer spending ? ELIMINATE

On test Day, I must have chosen E but some how I'm satisfied with my answer .....
Looks like something is tricky in C with usage of "Which".
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 08:16
onedayill wrote:
I b/w E & C.

(A) lowering of employment rates is wrong .unidiomatic. ELIMINATE

(B) lowering of employment rates is wrong .unidiomatic. ELIMINATE

(D) how can people cut consumer spending ? ELIMINATE

On test Day, I must have chosen E but some how I'm satisfied with my answer .....
Looks like something is tricky in C with usage of "Which".

So you mean its your 6th sense, which is causing you to think like this. Just kidding. Great thinking I believe. I am strongly supportive of slecting a choice which though not seems ok to you grammatically, but seems ok due to some unknown reason.
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 09:49
I picked E.

Investments, itself, didn't cause people to cut spending... it's the full event of 'drop in emp rates caused by a decrease in investments..."
so an -ing modifier (i.e., a verb modifier) is needed here.

and E maintains the parallelism: causing X and starting Y where X and Y are constructed as "noun + prepositional phrase"
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 11:52
I would go for E ...
Reason .. II ism in three clauses ... So I narrowed to D and E ..
In D .... I did not like " causing ... to cut consumer spending ".....
So chose E...
hope this is correct
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 20:15
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OA is C

This is very interesting thing I learnt and I will like to share.

Lets say X is singular and Y plural. Imagine this pattern :
X of Y, which is
------> which points to the noun before the comma. So X or Y??? In such case let GMAT be your guide. I haven't seen a foe helping! But here it does

1. If the verb after which is singular -> which refers to X
2. If the verb after which is plural -> which refers to Y

This rule overrides any rule about "which" referring to X [Reason - Ohhh so you didn't see the preposition "of"]
E.g. the box of nails, which is on the counter ---> which refers to box. I'd always say which refers to box since gmat was consistent in writing statements like this. But the truth is that the verb after "which" is singular "is" and seems to refer to X.

When I saw this sentence today I ignored the hints about "which" - they were right there in the sentence !

3:2 split leaves A,B and C as contenders. And I guess people already killed A and B

Option C. "which" refers to "employment rates" because the verb "cause" is plural. So subject has to be plural.
cycle of layoffs that lead ----> that refers to "layoffs" since the verb "lead" is plural.

• falling employment rates triggered by a drop in investment,
which cause cutbacks in consumer spending, starting a
cycle of layoffs that lead to even lower employment rates.
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 20:48
So why is E wrong?

Here is the OE
(D) This choice contains the wordy phrase "causing people to cut
consumer spending" and the redundant phrase "lead back."
Moreover, the words "causing" and "starting" illogically refer back
to the economic recession. In fact, the falling employment rates,
not the economic recession, cause the cutbacks in consumer
spending and start the cycle of layoffs.
(E) The words "causing" and "starting" illogically refer back to the
economic recession. In fact, the falling employment rates, not the
economic recession, cause the cutbacks in consumer spending
and start the cycle of layoffs.
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 20:58
But whats the issue with E ?
Is it because of wordy?
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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09 Jul 2010, 23:38
I chose C
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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10 Jul 2010, 10:39
any other explanation why not E?
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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11 Jul 2010, 06:50
nusmavrik wrote:
OA is C

This is very interesting thing I learnt and I will like to share.

Lets say X is singular and Y plural. Imagine this pattern :
X of Y, which is
------> which points to the noun before the comma. So X or Y??? In such case let GMAT be your guide. I haven't seen a foe helping! But here it does

1. If the verb after which is singular -> which refers to X
2. If the verb after which is plural -> which refers to Y

This rule overrides any rule about "which" referring to X [Reason - Ohhh so you didn't see the preposition "of"]
E.g. the box of nails, which is on the counter ---> which refers to box. I'd always say which refers to box since gmat was consistent in writing statements like this. But the truth is that the verb after "which" is singular "is" and seems to refer to X.

When I saw this sentence today I ignored the hints about "which" - they were right there in the sentence !

3:2 split leaves A,B and C as contenders. And I guess people already killed A and B

Option C. "which" refers to "employment rates" because the verb "cause" is plural. So subject has to be plural.
cycle of layoffs that lead ----> that refers to "layoffs" since the verb "lead" is plural.

• falling employment rates triggered by a drop in investment,
which cause cutbacks in consumer spending, starting a
cycle of layoffs that lead to even lower employment rates.

Great! Thanks for sharing.
Even i picked E, eliminated C.
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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11 Jul 2010, 18:13
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Hey All,

So apparently people wanted a Manhattan instructor to weigh in. So here I am! BTW, could people start putting the part of the sentence that's underlined in an actual underline? It's easy to do, and it makes the questions so much easier to read.

An economic recession can result from a lowering of employment rates triggered by a drop in investment, which causes people to cut consumer spending and starts a cycle of layoffs leading back to even lower employment rates.

NOTE: Clearly this is some kind of modifier issue ("which causes..." "triggered by..."). Remember that noun modifiers MUST TOUCH the noun they modify. There also seems to be some parallelism issues at work (and).

A) a lowering of employment rates triggered by a drop in investment, which causes people to cut consumer spending
and start a cycle of layoffs leading back to even lower employment rates.
PROBLEM: "Results from a lowering" is not idiomatic. "A lowering" would imply that somebody actually did the "lowering", whereas "falling" has no initiator. "Which causes" is unclear, but seems to be modifying "investment", which is incorrect (seems this way because it would say "which cause (no s)" if "rates" were the modifiee). Next, "causes" should be parallel to "starts", because it isn't "people" who "start a cycle of layoffs". Next, it's not leading "back" to even lower rates (they're even lower...we were never there before). Finally, we don't need to say "people to cut consumer spending". "Consumer spending" already implies the people.

B) a lowering of employment rates triggered by dropping investment, which causes people to cut consumer spending
and starts a cycle of layoffs leading back to even lower employment rates.
PROBLEM: "A lowering" issue. "Causes" issue. "leading back" issue.

C) falling employment rates triggered by a drop in investment, which cause cutbacks in consumer spending, starting a
cycle of layoffs that lead to even lower employment rates.
ANSWER: Lots of modifiers, but all are correct. "triggered" modifies "rates". "which cause" modifies "rates" as well. "starting" modifies the cutbacks in consumer spending (which makes logical sense...people don't spend money...businesses don't make us much...they have to lay people off).

D) falling employment rates that are triggered by a drop in investment, causing people to cut consumer spending and
starting a cycle of layoffs that lead back to even lower employment rates.
PROBLEM: "lead back" issue. "people...consumer spending" issue.

E) falling employment rates that are triggered by a drop in investment, causing cutbacks in consumer spending and
starting a cycle of layoffs leading to even lower employment rates.
PROBLEM: Just one modifier goes wrong here. "starting a cycle of layoffs" is modifying the previous clause ("Recession can result from rates that are triggered by a drop in investment"). But it's actually the cutbacks in consumer spending that start the cycle of layoffs. Also, we need a comma before the final participle ("leading"), because it's representing the RESULT of the layoffs, rather than modifying it adjectivally (C uses a relative clause "that lead" to do this).

Hope that helps! Toughie!

-t
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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11 Jul 2010, 22:54
Thanks tommy ! That was very helpful.
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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11 Jul 2010, 23:17
Thanks Tommy and nusmavrik for explanation.
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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12 Jul 2010, 18:00
good question and explanation
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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17 Jul 2010, 02:19
Quote:
C) falling employment rates triggered by a drop in investment, which cause cutbacks in consumer spending, starting a
cycle of layoffs that lead to even lower employment rates.
ANSWER: Lots of modifiers, but all are correct. "triggered" modifies "rates". "which cause" modifies "rates" as well. "starting" modifies the cutbacks in consumer spending (which makes logical sense...people don't spend money...businesses don't make us much...they have to lay people off).

can anyone explain, how gramatically in the sentence(not logically)-"starting modifies the cutbacks in economic spending"

An economic recession can result from falling employment rates triggered by a drop in investment, which cause cutbacks in consumer spending, starting a
cycle of layoffs that lead to even lower employment rates

I mean for example, in one of the earlier post, regarding which.
I came to know that we can find out what which modifies by
X(singular) , Y(plural), which singular/plural.
But we cannot apply this principle just as it is and assume its right because in option A, which causes would refer to investment, when 'which' refers to rates.
Similarly i am curious to know how starting modfies cutbacks in customer spending.

Kudos for the post, it helped me learn about which.
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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17 Jul 2010, 11:28
Hey BlueRobin,

It's actually a bit more complicated than that. Generally when we use a participle (-ing or -ed words), the resulting modifier modifies the ENTIRE preceding clause in some way (often explaining the RESULT of that clause). Here's an example:

I just got a job, making my mother very proud.

In that sentence, "making" is NOT modifying "job". It is modifying the FACT that I got a job.

This example is the same:

"starting" is actually modifying the ENTIRE preceding clause here. It's showing how the result of the triggered drop in investment causing cutbacks in spending starts a cycle of layoffs. Does that make sense? The most important takeaway is that participles with commas are VERY free (they have a lot of options for how they modify).

Let me know if you have any follow up questions!

-t
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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30 Jul 2010, 00:01
Got it wrong ..went with E ........great explanation Tommy
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Re: An economic recession can result from [#permalink]

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