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If ab - 2b = (4 - a)b, what is the value of b?

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If ab - 2b = (4 - a)b, what is the value of b?  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 12 Jan 2017, 22:40
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If ab - 2b = (4 - a)b, what is the value of b?

(1) |a^2 - 9| ≤ 0
(2) a < 0

Originally posted by Amby02 on 12 Jan 2017, 22:21.
Last edited by Bunuel on 12 Jan 2017, 22:40, edited 1 time in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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If ab - 2b = (4 - a)b, what is the value of b?  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jan 2017, 22:45
amberbajaj02 wrote:
If ab - 2b = (4 - a)b, what is the value of b?

(1) |a^2 - 9| ≤ 0
(2) a < 0



Hi..
Equation is ab-2b=(4-a)b..... ab-2b=4b-ab.....2ab-6b=0
2b(a-3)=0...
So two relations
1) if a=3, b can be 0 or anything else.
2)if \(a\neq{3}\), b has to be 0..

Let's see the statements

(1) |a^2 - 9| ≤ 0
LHS has to be 0 as MOD cannot be NEGATIVE..
So a^2-9=0.... a can be 3 or -3..
If a is 3, ans bcan be anything..
If a is -3, b is 0..
Insufficient

(2) a < 0
This means \(a\neq{3}\).
So b is 0..
Sufficient

B
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Re: If ab - 2b = (4 - a)b, what is the value of b?  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Jan 2017, 08:01
It is better to first solve the equation to see what information is already given:

ab - 2b = (4 - a)b
ab - 2b = 4b -ab
2ab = 6b

ab = 3b (Notice - do not cancel out b from both the sides here, because b can be zero). - Consider this one of the GMAT's trap, which is used in many questions.

ab - 3b = 0

b (a-3) = 0

Either b = 0 or a = 3

now a stmt would be sufficient if it tells that \(a\neq{3}\) because in that case we will say "b (a-3) = 0" is true because b = 0.

(1) |\(a^2\) - 9| ≤ 0
a mod is never negative hence \(a^2 - 9\) = 0 i.e. a is 3 or -3
insufficient - because if a =3 then we do not know whether b = 0 or not but if a = -3 then certainly b = 0.

(2) a < 0
if a is negative then \(a\neq{3}\). hence b=0
sufficient.
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Re: If ab - 2b = (4 - a)b, what is the value of b?  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Mar 2018, 01:18
Hello from the GMAT Club BumpBot!

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Re: If ab - 2b = (4 - a)b, what is the value of b? &nbs [#permalink] 22 Mar 2018, 01:18
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