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Because an oversupply of computer chips has sent prices plunging

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Re: QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 23 May 2017, 09:01
1
sandaki wrote:
what is wrong with D?
in option A,shouldn't "because" be followed by an "of"


In D, the idiom "Due to" can only be used to modify nouns

Ask yourself what is causing the manufacture to cut production? It's not computer chips (the noun) but the fact that an oversupply of computer chips has caused prices to plummet (a pharse, and therefore cannot be modified by Due to)

For A, the idiom "Because X did something, something else happens" is perfectly fine
"Because of X, Y" is also correct
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Re: QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Aug 2017, 05:09
GMATNinja, @e-gmat, and mikemcgarry

Why are we using present perfect 'has sent prices plunging' ? Isn't the action of 'prices plunging' over?

Little confused with the usage of present perfect in this sentence.


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Re: QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Nov 2017, 14:43
1
Shiv2016 wrote:
GMATNinja, @e-gmat, and mikemcgarry

Why are we using present perfect 'has sent prices plunging' ? Isn't the action of 'prices plunging' over?

Little confused with the usage of present perfect in this sentence.


Thanks

Hm, good question -- I'd never really even thought about the verb tenses here, mostly because we don't really have a choice. (A), (C), and (E) all use present perfect ("has/have sent prices plunging") to describe the price drop; (B) and (D) just turn the action into a noun, so the verb tense isn't an issue in those.

So my first thought is that the question doesn't even give us the option of using simple past tense, so there's no good reason to worry about the distinction between past tense and present perfect tense in this situation.

My second thought is that present perfect seems legit enough: if the manufacturer has just announced future production cuts, then it's reasonable to say that the oversupply continues to send prices plunging.

My less-useful third thought: there's actually a lot of grey area between past tense and present perfect tense, both in real life and on the GMAT. We have a habit of saying things like "I have visited Ukraine" in the present perfect, even though the action of visiting Ukraine happened in the past. I guess we say things like that to imply that either the consequences of that trip are ongoing in the present or (more likely) to suggest the possibility that I might return there. (Because... vareniki!)

It's not hard to come up with all sorts of similar cases, in which you could choose either simple past or present perfect, depending on your stylistic choices. Here's an official example about "dating fossils" -- in my opinion, the act of "dating" fossils should be past tense. But the official answer is in present perfect, presumably because that process of dating the fossils is an ongoing process of discovery, and scientists might eventually determine a different date. Or something like that.

The key, though, is that the GMAT won't force you to choose between present perfect and simple past unless the difference is crystal-clear. And in this particular question, the GMAT has written the question in a way that makes it a non-issue.

I hope this helps! Or at least helps you sleep at night, because that kinda got long and boring, and might put you right to sleep... :)
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Re: QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 11 May 2018, 15:19
1
SugandhaM wrote:
GMATNinja wrote:
Quote:
(B) Because of plunging prices for computer chips, which is due to an oversupply

Hey GMATNinja, how do we know that which is modifying 'chips' and not plunging prices? Can't we argue that "for computer chips" could be a prepositional phrase?

Thanks for your help!

Good question -- I should have addressed this issue in the original explanation. In theory, "which is due to an oversupply" could modify the entire phrase "plunging prices for computer chips" -- meaning-wise, that makes perfect sense, and I think it's OK for which to "reach back" behind the prepositional phrase here. The trouble is that (B) would still be wrong in that case, because the subject-verb agreement wouldn't work anymore: "plunging prices... IS due to an oversupply."

So either way, the modifier is wrong: if "which is due to an oversupply" modifies "computer chips", it's illogical, and if "which is due to an oversupply" modifies "plunging prices", the subject-verb agreement is unambiguously wrong.

shahMeet wrote:
For option E: Further analysis

that computer chip prices have been sent plunging is an IC (which is not really required).
My question is can we ever have 'with' modifying a phrase?

I'm not quite sure that I understand the question, but I'll give it a shot. For starters, "that computer chip prices have been sent plunging" is a subordinate clause, not an independent clause. And "with" can modify all sorts of phrases: for example, in the phrase "I ate two burritos with great joy", "with great joy" modifies the entire phrase "I ate two burritos."

I hope this helps!
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Re: QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jun 2018, 03:39
A is good, but one thing: there is a obsequies of events, but author uses Present perfect two times.
In my opinion it would be better if Past Perfect would be used for first event.

Because an oversupply of computer chips had sent prices plunging, the manufacturer has announced that it will cut production by closing its factories for two days a month.

Please somebody explain where I am wrong.
Thanks, BR
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Re: QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jun 2018, 07:18
GMATNinja wrote:
Quote:
(A) Because an oversupply of computer chips has sent prices plunging

Absolutely nothing jumps out at me with (A). Subject-verb agreement is fine, logic seems fine. *shrug*

I guess we'll keep (A).

Quote:
(B) Because of plunging prices for computer chips, which is due to an oversupply

I'm really happy to see the word "which", because it's usually pretty straightforward. In this case, the phrase "which is due to an oversupply" is trying to modify "computer chips", and that makes absolutely no sense, partly because the computer chips themselves can't be caused by an oversupply, and partly because the subject-verb agreement is wrong ("chips... is"). Eliminate (B).

Quote:
(C) Because computer chip prices have been sent plunging, which resulted from an oversupply

"Which" can only be used to modify nouns, and the preceding phrase is a verb phrase, "have been sent plunging". Eliminate (C).

Quote:
(D) Due to plunging computer chip prices from an oversupply

This one is for you, warriorguy! Phrases that begin with "due to" can only modify nouns, not verbs. Here, have a couple of examples:

  • The game was postponed due to rain. --> Wrong, since the phrase "due to rain" modifies the verb phrase "was postponed." "Due to" phrases can only modify nouns.
  • Souvik's success on the GMAT was due to his hard work. --> Correct, since "due to his hard work" modifies the noun "success."

In (D), "due to plunging computer chip prices from an oversupply" presumably modifies the manufacturer, since that's the noun that follows. And that makes no sense at all: the manufacturer itself wasn't "due to plunging computer chip prices." (D) is gone.

Quote:
(E) Due to an oversupply, with the result that computer chip prices have been sent plunging

This is just an uglier, wordier version of (D), with the same "due to" problem. Eliminate (E). (A) wins.


What a beautiful and logical explanation.
Thanks a lot.
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Re: QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jun 2018, 12:46
1
jackspire wrote:
What a beautiful and logical explanation.
Thanks a lot.

Thank you so much for the kind words, jackspire! Glad that the explanations are useful sometimes. :)

ilya56rus wrote:
A is good, but one thing: there is a obsequies of events, but author uses Present perfect two times.
In my opinion it would be better if Past Perfect would be used for first event.

Because an oversupply of computer chips had sent prices plunging, the manufacturer has announced that it will cut production by closing its factories for two days a month.

Please somebody explain where I am wrong.
Thanks, BR

A few thoughts, ilya56rus: first, the option you proposed isn't an option, so it's a non-issue! The best approach on SC is to find the four answers that are the most severely flawed. So it's not helpful to start coming up with alternative options that aren't even there -- at least not when you're taking an actual exam. :-)

I understand where you're coming from, though. Trouble is, this actually wouldn't be correct on the GMAT:

ilya56rus wrote:
Because an oversupply of computer chips had sent prices plunging, the manufacturer has announced that it will cut production by closing its factories for two days a month.

The problem is that the past perfect tense verb ("had sent") can only be used as the first of two past actions. So for this to be correct, you would basically need to have some other verb in simple past tense. And we don't have that here: instead, "the manufacturer has announced" (present perfect tense, if you like the terminology) indicates an action that starts in the past and continues into the present.

And maybe there's an exception that I can't quite imagine, but it wouldn't really make sense to use the past perfect ("had sent") with the present perfect ("has announced"), since that last action would continue into the present.

But what about the actual version in the correct answer?

Quote:
Because an oversupply of computer chips has sent prices plunging, the manufacturer has announced that it will cut production by closing its factories for two days a month.

There's no problem there at all. Both actions in bold ("has sent prices plunging" and "the manufacturer has announced") started in the past and continue in the present -- or at the very least, we can easily imagine that the manufacturer's announcement continues to be relevant in the present. I suppose the phrase "has sent prices plunging" implies that prices are STILL plunging in the present, but there's nothing inherently wrong with that.

Could we find better ways to write the sentence? Sure! In most cases, correct SC sentences aren't all that great, and a good editor would rip most of them to shreds. But there's nothing WRONG with (A), and there are plenty of flaws in the other choices.

I hope this helps!
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QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jun 2018, 17:40
Shiv2016 wrote:
GMATNinja, @e-gmat, and mikemcgarry

Why are we using present perfect 'has sent prices plunging' ? Isn't the action of 'prices plunging' over?

Little confused with the usage of present perfect in this sentence.


Thanks

The present perfect tense serves to express a PAST ACTION THAT AFFECTS THE PRESENT.
Example:
You do not need to give me directions to the city; I have traveled there many times.
Here, the present tense action in red is true because of the blue action.
Since the blue action happened in the past but affects the present, it is expressed in the present perfect tense.

OA: Because an oversupply of computer chips has sent prices plunging, the manufacturer...will cut production.
Here, the blue action affects the present because -- sometime AFTER THE PRESENT -- the company WILL cut production.
Since the blue action happened in the past but affects the present, it is expressed in the present perfect tense.
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Re: QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 31 Aug 2018, 12:35
Hi Experts,

Out of above all rule based explanations, i have a small query regarding different approach to choose among options A & D:
-Can i think like, OVERSUPPLY is leading Manufacturer to cut the production, not the PLUNGING PRICES. So OVERSUPPLY should be the subject not the PLUNGING PRICES..!

Someone please explain, if this can be applied here..
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Re: QOTD: Because an oversupply of computer chips  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Sep 2018, 11:53
appylov wrote:
Hi Experts,

Out of above all rule based explanations, i have a small query regarding different approach to choose among options A & D:
-Can i think like, OVERSUPPLY is leading Manufacturer to cut the production, not the PLUNGING PRICES. So OVERSUPPLY should be the subject not the PLUNGING PRICES..!

Someone please explain, if this can be applied here..

Here are (A) and (D) again:
Quote:
Because an oversupply of computer chips has sent prices plunging, the manufacturer has announced that it will cut production by closing its factories for two days a month.

(A) Because an oversupply of computer chips has sent prices plunging

(D) Due to plunging computer chip prices from an oversupply

Yup, that sounds reasonable enough, appylov! I suppose that it's the oversupply -- or better still, the fact that the oversupply has sent prices plunging -- that caused the manufacturer to cut production. It's arguably not the plunging computer chip prices alone that caused the manufacturer to cut production.

I still think that it takes less effort to just recognize that "due to" is misused in (D), and I'm all about minimizing effort on SC. But I do agree with your analysis!
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