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# Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw

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Manager
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Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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23 Oct 2013, 10:23
5
16
00:00

Difficulty:

95% (hard)

Question Stats:

30% (01:16) correct 70% (01:17) wrong based on 629 sessions

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Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks.

A. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks
B. and mutual funds are not always safer as individual stocks are
C. and mutual funds are not always as safe as individual stocks are
D. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are
E. mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are

I couldn't get this...can somebody please explain.

I am generally stuck in comparison Qs whenever they involve verbs (are/do etc) - is there a way of decoding them?
Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 4476
Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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23 Oct 2013, 12:17
24
5
nikhil09 wrote:
Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks.

A. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks
B. and mutual funds are not always safer as individual stocks are
C. and mutual funds are not always as safe as individual stocks are
D. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are
E. mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are

I couldn't get this...can somebody please explain.

I am generally stuck in comparison Qs whenever they involve verbs (are/do etc) - is there a way of decoding them?

Dear nikhil09 & crackgmatg,
This is an absolutely atrocious question. The reason you are having trouble with it does not reflect on you: it reflects on the abysmal quality of the question itself.

The first half of the sentence is irrelevant, except insofar as it's an independent clause, so we need the "and" before the second independent clause. Choice (E) is a run-on sentence, so it is wrong. See:
http://gmat.magoosh.com/lessons/916-run-on-sentences

Choices (A) & (D) are both 100% correct. In this instance, it's perfectly correct either to include the second verb, "are", or to omit it. Choice (C) is also grammatically & idiomatically correct, although presumably it changes the meaning.

In this sentence, in the second clause, we just have two nouns ---- the subject noun "mutual funds" and the comparative noun "individual stocks". It's perfectly clear that what we are saying about the first "are not always safer" is what we are saying about the second. There's absolutely no ambiguity that both are intended as subjects.

We run into cases in which we have to use a verb after "than" when there is more than one noun before the word "than" ---- in particular, if we have
[subject noun][verb][comparative word][direct object noun]"than"[noun]
then, if there's no verb, it's not clear whether the noun after "than" is intended to be compared to the subject or the object. For example:
I like Italian food more than Chris.
Does this sentence mean
(a) I like Italian food more than Chris likes Italian food?
or
(b) I like Italian food more than I like Chris?
When there's more than one noun before the word "than", then we need the verb after "than" for clarification.

In the above sentence, that extra verb is 100% optional, not needed at all. Both (A) & (D) are perfectly correct, and because of this, as a GMAT SC practice question, the question posted at the top of this thread is an unholy abomination, an utter trainwreck. The most benefit you will get from this question is if you run away from it as fast as possible.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
_________________
Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. — William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)
##### General Discussion
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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23 Oct 2013, 10:55
1
1
nikhil09 wrote:
Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks.

A. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks
B. and mutual funds are not always safer as individual stocks are
C. and mutual funds are not always as safe as individual stocks are
D. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are
E. mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are

I couldn't get this...can somebody please explain.

I am generally stuck in comparison Qs whenever they involve verbs (are/do etc) - is there a way of decoding them?

The Ans should be D by POE.
A - wrong comparison (safety compared with stocks)
B- safer as- wrong idiom
C- as safe as - grammatically correct, but changes meaning
D- correct idiom, meaning and grammar
E- Missing and. Use and after comma as you would use a semi colon.
Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 4476
Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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25 Oct 2013, 10:00
1
Skag55 wrote:
SaraLotfy wrote:
Questions like these tend to make you doubt yourself, and I've been coming across so many of them lately!
Thanks for clarifying and for being alert.

Likewise. I don't think it takes many questions to start doubting yourself, and we don't want that to propagate till the d-day!
We need to know why and how and when.

"Should we use are...should we not...hmm...it's not necessary.
Click.
BAAAAH! Now it IS necessary???"
I don't want that!

Should this question even be removed (or corrected) ?

Dear Skag55,
Should it be removed or corrected? Well, it's tricky. Some company wrote this question, so the folks at that company may very well object if we alter or delete their question. Ideally, they themselves would come here and either defend their question or change it. As an employee of another company, I don't feel I would have the right to alter or remove the product of another company. The most I can do is say --- Here's a question I think is better:
http://gmat.magoosh.com/questions/3563

Folks preparing for the GMAT should be aware: there is considerable variation in the quality of SC questions out there. Good SC questions are extremely hard to write, and the GMAT constantly impresses me with the impeccably high quality they maintain. Some sources (MGMAT, Veritas, Magoosh, etc.) have high quality questions, but I have seen many poor questions from many other sources, including many in this forum. Remember, anyone, anyone, can post a question in this forum. Don't be naive in assuming, just because someone out there says "This is a GMAT SC practice question", that the question is anywhere near the high standards the GMAT keeps. Always be critical with respect to the source, especially before you spend any money on something.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
_________________
Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. — William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)
Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 4476
Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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25 Oct 2013, 11:01
1
Skag55 wrote:
I'm covered. Thanks Mike!
As a side note, I too have seen controversial questions on MGMAT, then again MGMAT write in their SC guide that OG12 has some errors in their questions too! I guess the majority of the aforementioned are of good quality.
I think you can only prepare so much for SC anyway and cynically speaking, it's a bunch of rules, either you know them (and have the mental stamina after 2.5 hours) or you don't.

Yes, the majority of question in those places are high quality. Nobody is perfect!

One can always prepare more deeply for SC, but I would say --- beware of the "bunch of rules" mindset. The GMAT excels at writing questions in which you have to engage the meaning of the sentence, and simply following the grammatical rules mechanically will lead you astray.

Mike
_________________
Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. — William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)
Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 4476
Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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24 Apr 2017, 11:53
1
yousefalj wrote:
Dear Mike,

As a customer of Magoosh and the company that created this question - Economist Tutor - it is quite discouraging to read your opinion. I used Magoosh to start my prep, obtained a 640 (q44, v35- 95%tile, 94%ile CR but 35%ile RC) on the gmat and then enrolled with the Economist, which offered a 70 point guarantee. I am discouraged because I spent a significant amount of time completing their course. I absolutely loved Magoosh and I also really like the Economist, however based on your opinion, have I regressed rather than progressed after completing a course which contains such poor quality questions as you have pointed out? I have answered 1000+ Verbal questions after having been in the zone of official questions leading up to my initial gmat exam.

Dear yousefalj,

I'm happy to respond.

First of all, let's be clear. My strong judgments in this post concern a single question. I found significant flaws in this single isolated question. I certainly do not have knowledge of every single question from Economist Tutor, nor do I know the lessons they have, the quality of the explanations they give, etc. etc. I am in absolutely no position to judge their test-prep product overall, nor it my place to do so. I was judging a single question in isolation.

Shakespeare said "Ambition should be made of sterner stuff." My friend, believe in yourself. Trust your own judgment. If you are using any source and feel that you are learning and understanding and improving, trust your own sense deeply. If you know you are improving, don't let anyone's words shake you. The real test is how you perform on official questions and official practice tests. Those are the only results that matter.

When you are a manager in the business world, you will be assailed with judgments and criticism and alternate opinions all the time. Folks who are paralyzed by these other points of view never make progress. It's certainly important to take in divergent viewpoints and consider them, but in the end, you have to take responsibility for your own decisions and your own path. Once you have made your decision, decide what results really matter, and don't let any outer voice from anywhere else pull you away from your own deep sense of knowing. In your core is a knowing that you can trust: it's not a head-kind of knowledge, but something that comes from your core. If you learn to trust this deeply, you can be a powerful leader.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
_________________
Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. — William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)
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Posts: 1044
Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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23 Oct 2013, 12:31
1
Mike - I think this is a poor quality question in the sense it has two correct options. GMAT will never have such confusions. Right?
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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23 Oct 2013, 13:10
bagdbmba wrote:
Mike - I think this is a poor quality question in the sense it has two correct options. GMAT will never have such confusions. Right?

Dear bagdbmba,
Absolutely correct. The real GMAT, on any SC question, will have only one clearly right choice, and every other choice will be incorrect for an unambiguously clear reason ---- even if it is grammatically & idiomatically correct, it may be awkwardly long or ambiguous or something of that nature. There never will be two completely correct choices on the real GMAT or on the SC practice questions of any of the better prep sources.
Mike
_________________
Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. — William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)
Manager
Status: ..and that's a wrap!!
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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24 Oct 2013, 07:34
Dear Mike,
Thanks for the explanation on the question and the concept of comparisons which use verbs. It absolutely makes a lot of sense now
Nikhil
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Joined: 24 Apr 2013
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Location: United States
Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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24 Oct 2013, 11:54
mikemcgarry wrote:
bagdbmba wrote:
Mike - I think this is a poor quality question in the sense it has two correct options. GMAT will never have such confusions. Right?

Dear bagdbmba,
Absolutely correct. The real GMAT, on any SC question, will have only one clearly right choice, and every other choice will be incorrect for an unambiguously clear reason ---- even if it is grammatically & idiomatically correct, it may be awkwardly long or ambiguous or something of that nature. There never will be two completely correct choices on the real GMAT or on the SC practice questions of any of the better prep sources.
Mike

Thank you Mike

Questions like these tend to make you doubt yourself, and I've been coming across so many of them lately!
Thanks for clarifying and for being alert.
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Joined: 26 Feb 2013
Posts: 146
Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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25 Oct 2013, 03:30
SaraLotfy wrote:
mikemcgarry wrote:
bagdbmba wrote:
Mike - I think this is a poor quality question in the sense it has two correct options. GMAT will never have such confusions. Right?

Dear bagdbmba,
Absolutely correct. The real GMAT, on any SC question, will have only one clearly right choice, and every other choice will be incorrect for an unambiguously clear reason ---- even if it is grammatically & idiomatically correct, it may be awkwardly long or ambiguous or something of that nature. There never will be two completely correct choices on the real GMAT or on the SC practice questions of any of the better prep sources.
Mike

Thank you Mike

Questions like these tend to make you doubt yourself, and I've been coming across so many of them lately!
Thanks for clarifying and for being alert.

Likewise. I don't think it takes many questions to start doubting yourself, and we don't want that to propagate till the d-day!
We need to know why and how and when.

"Should we use are...should we not...hmm...it's not necessary.
Click.
BAAAAH! Now it IS necessary???"
I don't want that!

Should this question even be removed (or corrected) ?
Manager
Joined: 26 Feb 2013
Posts: 146
Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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25 Oct 2013, 10:35
mikemcgarry wrote:
Some sources (MGMAT, Veritas, Magoosh, etc.) have high quality questions.

I'm covered. Thanks Mike!
As a side note, I too have seen controversial questions on MGMAT, then again MGMAT write in their SC guide that OG12 has some errors in their questions too! I guess the majority of the aforementioned are of good quality.
I think you can only prepare so much for SC anyway and cynically speaking, it's a bunch of rules, either you know them (and have the mental stamina after 2.5 hours) or you don't.
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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25 Oct 2013, 11:20
mikemcgarry wrote:
Skag55 wrote:
I'm covered. Thanks Mike!
As a side note, I too have seen controversial questions on MGMAT, then again MGMAT write in their SC guide that OG12 has some errors in their questions too! I guess the majority of the aforementioned are of good quality.
I think you can only prepare so much for SC anyway and cynically speaking, it's a bunch of rules, either you know them (and have the mental stamina after 2.5 hours) or you don't.

Yes, the majority of question in those places are high quality. Nobody is perfect!

One can always prepare more deeply for SC, but I would say --- beware of the "bunch of rules" mindset. The GMAT excels at writing questions in which you have to engage the meaning of the sentence, and simply following the grammatical rules mechanically will lead you astray.

Mike

Funny you should say that, I'm actually not a native English speaker, and I have fallen a few times into this trap!
That's definitely one for the non native English speakers since along with applying the rules: we also have to translate the sentence into our native language to understand what it means, instead of just reading words. I find that "eliminating the fluff", or "removing the middle man" (whatever you wanna call it), works for me to get the gist of the sentence.
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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13 Nov 2015, 00:06
mikemcgarry

Thank you mike for the explanation. I selected option C. Since this option alters the meaning of sentence, I will remember your tip - "The GMAT excels at writing questions in which you have to engage the meaning of the sentence, and simply following the grammatical rules mechanically will lead you astray."

Thanks!!
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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11 Dec 2015, 07:27
This question obviously has two correct options A and D.The only reason I chose A was because of its brevity. A is same as D but uses one word less.
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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22 Apr 2017, 13:56
mikemcgarry wrote:
nikhil09 wrote:
Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks.

A. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks
B. and mutual funds are not always safer as individual stocks are
C. and mutual funds are not always as safe as individual stocks are
D. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are
E. mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are

I couldn't get this...can somebody please explain.

I am generally stuck in comparison Qs whenever they involve verbs (are/do etc) - is there a way of decoding them?

Dear nikhil09 & crackgmatg,
This is an absolutely atrocious question. The reason you are having trouble with it does not reflect on you: it reflects on the abysmal quality of the question itself.

The first half of the sentence is irrelevant, except insofar as it's an independent clause, so we need the "and" before the second independent clause. Choice (E) is a run-on sentence, so it is wrong. See:
http://gmat.magoosh.com/lessons/916-run-on-sentences

Choices (A) & (D) are both 100% correct. In this instance, it's perfectly correct either to include the second verb, "are", or to omit it. Choice (C) is also grammatically & idiomatically correct, although presumably it changes the meaning.

In this sentence, in the second clause, we just have two nouns ---- the subject noun "mutual funds" and the comparative noun "individual stocks". It's perfectly clear that what we are saying about the first "are not always safer" is what we are saying about the second. There's absolutely no ambiguity that both are intended as subjects.

We run into cases in which we have to use a verb after "than" when there is more than one noun before the word "than" ---- in particular, if we have
[subject noun][verb][comparative word][direct object noun]"than"[noun]
then, if there's no verb, it's not clear whether the noun after "than" is intended to be compared to the subject or the object. For example:
I like Italian food more than Chris.
Does this sentence mean
(a) I like Italian food more than Chris likes Italian food?
or
(b) I like Italian food more than I like Chris?
When there's more than one noun before the word "than", then we need the verb after "than" for clarification.

In the above sentence, that extra verb is 100% optional, not needed at all. Both (A) & (D) are perfectly correct, and because of this, as a GMAT SC practice question, the question posted at the top of this thread is an unholy abomination, an utter trainwreck. The most benefit you will get from this question is if you run away from it as fast as possible.

Does all this make sense?
Mike

Dear Mike,

As a customer of Magoosh and the company that created this question - Economist Tutor - it is quite discouraging to read your opinion. I used Magoosh to start my prep, obtained a 640 (q44, v35- 95%tile, 94%ile CR but 35%ile RC) on the gmat and then enrolled with the Economist, which offered a 70 point guarantee. I am discouraged because I spent a significant amount of time completing their course. I absolutely loved Magoosh and I also really like the Economist, however based on your opinion, have I regressed rather than progressed after completing a course which contains such poor quality questions as you have pointed out? I have answered 1000+ Verbal questions after having been in the zone of official questions leading up to my initial gmat exam.
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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23 Apr 2017, 05:26
nikhil09 wrote:
Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks.

A. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks
B. and mutual funds are not always safer as individual stocks are
C. and mutual funds are not always as safe as individual stocks are
D. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are
E. mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are

This sentence makes correct grammatical use of a comparative structure and is stylistically sound as it uses a conjugated verb in the second part of the comparison (individual stocks are).
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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23 Apr 2017, 05:43
Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks.

A. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks
B. and mutual funds are not always safer as individual stocks are
C. and mutual funds are not always as safe as individual stocks are
D. and mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are
E. mutual funds are not always safer than individual stocks are

Director
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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29 Apr 2017, 00:14
"as safe as" options vilolate intended meaning which is to say that "A is not safer than B".
So, B and C out
We need "and" after comma because clause comes after. E is out
Between A and D, A does not provide full parallelism for clause which should contain verb

D is the best
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Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw  [#permalink]

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18 Jan 2019, 00:53
Is it a good question ?? Please let us know can such questions be asked in GMAT ??
Re: Investment always carries a risk of loss, and mutual funds are not alw   [#permalink] 18 Jan 2019, 00:53

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