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# help needed in interpreting the chart!

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Joined: 23 Aug 2011
Posts: 76
help needed in interpreting the chart!  [#permalink]

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20 Sep 2012, 06:04
Found this in kaplan's GMAT practice test.

I was confused by the explanation provided below by the kaplan.
"The Southwest spent \$20 million total, while the Northwest spent \$30 million total. The stem tells us to assume that all of the expenses in each region are in the same proportion as in the Northeast, which means that the Southwest spent of what the Northwest spent on each category. (The ratio of their total expenses—\$20 to \$30 million—gives us the proportion.) Since the Northwest spent \$1.25 million on janitorial staff, Southwest spent of that on janitorial staff, which would be about \$800,000 and certainly less than the next closest answer choice, \$1.2 million."

I am not able to understand the bolded part in the explanation.How they have deduced this from the graph?
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Re: help needed in interpreting the chart!  [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2012, 23:00
Dear Conty911:

I am happy to help with this.

This indeed is a tricky chart. First, just an overview of the chart. The left-most scale (up to 120) and column (with regions) gives the overall national picture. Then, they want to give us the breakdown for just one region, the Northwest.
The first grey trapezoid is meant to suggest --- that one piece of the left column, the "Northwest", is blown up to be the whole of the middle column. The middle scale (up to 30) and the column shows the breakdown within the Northeast of the four major areas of expenses: how much the Northwest spends on each of the following (a) packing material, (b) ingredients, (c) equipment, and (d) staff.
The second grey trapezoid is meant to suggest --- they are blowing up just the "staff" portion of the middle column, to show its breakdown in the column on the right. The right most scale (up to 6) and the column shows the breakdown of expenses by various categories of staff, various types of employees.

It's a funny chart, because it "zooms in" to one segment, and then "zooms in" again to a segment of the first zooming.

OK, now to your question: the bold text.
The vertical size of the segments on the left-most scale tells us the relative amount of money spent in each region. The height of each segment, as measured by the adjacent scale, tells the amount of money in the corresponding region. Look at the left-most scale. The sections are evenly space, and each 20 units, and the second from the top is labeled "100", so the top must be 120. We can use the position of the top and bottom lines of each region-segment to calculate the amount of money spent in that region.
The Northwest goes from the top (120) down to exactly halfway between 80 and 100, which has to be 90. From 90 to 120 --- that's 30 for the Northwest. This is corroborated by the middle chart, which shows only the Northwest, and goes up to 30.
The Southwest goes from exactly halfway between 60 and 80 (i.e. 70) to exactly halfway between 80 and 100 (i.e. 90) ---- 70 to 90 --- that's 20 for the Southwest.
Numbers are in millions of dollars, so that's \$30M and \$20M respectively.

Does this make sense?

Mike
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Re: help needed in interpreting the chart!  [#permalink]

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27 Sep 2012, 05:41
Good explanation. Thank you!.
mikemcgarry wrote:
Dear Conty911:

I am happy to help with this.

This indeed is a tricky chart. First, just an overview of the chart. The left-most scale (up to 120) and column (with regions) gives the overall national picture. Then, they want to give us the breakdown for just one region, the Northwest.
The first grey trapezoid is meant to suggest --- that one piece of the left column, the "Northwest", is blown up to be the whole of the middle column. The middle scale (up to 30) and the column shows the breakdown within the Northeast of the four major areas of expenses: how much the Northwest spends on each of the following (a) packing material, (b) ingredients, (c) equipment, and (d) staff.
The second grey trapezoid is meant to suggest --- they are blowing up just the "staff" portion of the middle column, to show its breakdown in the column on the right. The right most scale (up to 6) and the column shows the breakdown of expenses by various categories of staff, various types of employees.

It's a funny chart, because it "zooms in" to one segment, and then "zooms in" again to a segment of the first zooming.

OK, now to your question: the bold text.
The vertical size of the segments on the left-most scale tells us the relative amount of money spent in each region. The height of each segment, as measured by the adjacent scale, tells the amount of money in the corresponding region. Look at the left-most scale. The sections are evenly space, and each 20 units, and the second from the top is labeled "100", so the top must be 120. We can use the position of the top and bottom lines of each region-segment to calculate the amount of money spent in that region.
The Northwest goes from the top (120) down to exactly halfway between 80 and 100, which has to be 90. From 90 to 120 --- that's 30 for the Northwest. This is corroborated by the middle chart, which shows only the Northwest, and goes up to 30.
The Southwest goes from exactly halfway between 60 and 80 (i.e. 70) to exactly halfway between 80 and 100 (i.e. 90) ---- 70 to 90 --- that's 20 for the Southwest.
Numbers are in millions of dollars, so that's \$30M and \$20M respectively.

Does this make sense?

Mike
Re: help needed in interpreting the chart! &nbs [#permalink] 27 Sep 2012, 05:41
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