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Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation

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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Feb 2019, 08:13
https://gmatclub.com/forum/prices-at-th ... 06127.html

above similar sentence from og. it is good to practice "that" and no "that"
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Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Mar 2019, 14:48
GMATNinja

Just a quick question


I read your post of 03/2018, and I have a doubt between D and C, as non-native in English.

I don't understand why is a waste of words to repeat "circulation". I have learned that Gmat prefers parallelism, and in many exercises I have found that is necessary to repeat the noun in order to make the sentence "parallel". As "that" in D is so much separated of the word "circulation", I understand that the word "that" is necessary.



Could you provide an explanation "conceptual" of parallelism (such as a "rule" to distinguish when is a "waste of words" and when is necessary to repeat the noun), please?


Thank you
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Apr 2019, 04:31
4
Mystery123 wrote:
GMATNinja

Just a quick question


I read your post of 03/2018, and I have a doubt between D and C, as non-native in English.

I don't understand why is a waste of words to repeat "circulation". I have learned that Gmat prefers parallelism, and in many exercises I have found that is necessary to repeat the noun in order to make the sentence "parallel". As "that" in D is so much separated of the word "circulation", I understand that the word "that" is necessary.



Could you provide an explanation "conceptual" of parallelism (such as a "rule" to distinguish when is a "waste of words" and when is necessary to repeat the noun), please?


Thank you

Excellent question! To see why the pronoun "that" can sometimes muddle the meaning of the sentence, consider a simple example, "Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than on Thursday." This makes perfect sense. Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than he ate on Thursday. Because the first prepositional phrase, "on Tuesday" modifies when Johnny ate pie, it's perfectly logical to assume the second one, "on Thursday" is doing the same thing, even if we don't repeat the subject or the verb.

But watch what happens when I throw a "that" in: "Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than that on Thursday." At best the "that" is unnecessary, as we've already established that the sentence works just fine without it. Worse, if "that" refers to "pie," it kind of sounds like we're saying that Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than the pie ate on Thursday! No one should have to live in a world in which pie cannibalism is rampant.

Same kind of weirdness in (D): "Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than that in a similar period a year earlier." We're trying to compare the circulation these newspapers had in one period to what they had in another. The repeated "in" makes this clear without the use of "that." And if "that" refers to "circulation," it seems as though the biggest newspapers had a lower circulation in one period than the circulation had in another period.

If introducing extraneous words is either unnecessary or confusing, we'd rather not do it, and so (D) is an inferior option to (C).

Put another way, we want to avoid an overly rigid approach when we're evaluating an option. Rather than thinking "well, I saw this word earlier, so I have to see the same word later!" we want to consider what a given construction does to the meaning and clarity of the sentence, while taking the context into account.

I hope that helps!
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Apr 2019, 20:34
1
GMATNinja wrote:
Mystery123 wrote:
GMATNinja

Just a quick question


I read your post of 03/2018, and I have a doubt between D and C, as non-native in English.

I don't understand why is a waste of words to repeat "circulation". I have learned that Gmat prefers parallelism, and in many exercises I have found that is necessary to repeat the noun in order to make the sentence "parallel". As "that" in D is so much separated of the word "circulation", I understand that the word "that" is necessary.



Could you provide an explanation "conceptual" of parallelism (such as a "rule" to distinguish when is a "waste of words" and when is necessary to repeat the noun), please?


Thank you

Excellent question! To see why the pronoun "that" can sometimes muddle the meaning of the sentence, consider a simple example, "Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than on Thursday." This makes perfect sense. Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than he ate on Thursday. Because the first prepositional phrase, "on Tuesday" modifies when Johnny ate pie, it's perfectly logical to assume the second one, "on Thursday" is doing the same thing, even if we don't repeat the subject or the verb.

But watch what happens when I throw a "that" in: "Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than that on Thursday." At best the "that" is unnecessary, as we've already established that the sentence works just fine without it. Worse, if "that" refers to "pie," it kind of sounds like we're saying that Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than the pie ate on Thursday! No one should have to live in a world in which pie cannibalism is rampant.

Same kind of weirdness in (D): "Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than that in a similar period a year earlier." We're trying to compare the circulation these newspapers had in one period to what they had in another. The repeated "in" makes this clear without the use of "that." And if "that" refers to "circulation," it seems as though the biggest newspapers had a lower circulation in one period than the circulation had in another period.

If introducing extraneous words is either unnecessary or confusing, we'd rather not do it, and so (D) is an inferior option to (C).

Put another way, we want to avoid an overly rigid approach when we're evaluating an option. Rather than thinking "well, I saw this word earlier, so I have to see the same word later!" we want to consider what a given construction does to the meaning and clarity of the sentence, while taking the context into account.

I hope that helps!



thank you for this explanation. but consider the following question (from og), with OA being choice B

Prices at the producer level are only 1.3 percent higher now than a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the south are hurting crops and therefore raised corn and soybean prices.


(A) than a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the south are hurting crops and therefore raised

(B) than those of a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the south are hurting crops and therefore raising

(C) than a year ago and are going down, despite floods in the Midwest and drought in the south, and are hurting crops and therefore raising

(D) as those of a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the south hurt crops and therefore raise

(E) as they were a year ago and are going down, despite floods in the Midwest and drought in the south, and are hurting crops and therefore raising

the above question contain "those" in official question B. I think "those" is not good here . but 'those' is in official question because other choices contain clear errors.
my conclusion is that " those", if it is inserted mistakenly, is minor error.

pls, comment on above point. thank you
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Apr 2019, 03:45
thangvietnam wrote:
GMATNinja wrote:
Mystery123 wrote:
GMATNinja

Just a quick question


I read your post of 03/2018, and I have a doubt between D and C, as non-native in English.

I don't understand why is a waste of words to repeat "circulation". I have learned that Gmat prefers parallelism, and in many exercises I have found that is necessary to repeat the noun in order to make the sentence "parallel". As "that" in D is so much separated of the word "circulation", I understand that the word "that" is necessary.



Could you provide an explanation "conceptual" of parallelism (such as a "rule" to distinguish when is a "waste of words" and when is necessary to repeat the noun), please?


Thank you

Excellent question! To see why the pronoun "that" can sometimes muddle the meaning of the sentence, consider a simple example, "Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than on Thursday." This makes perfect sense. Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than he ate on Thursday. Because the first prepositional phrase, "on Tuesday" modifies when Johnny ate pie, it's perfectly logical to assume the second one, "on Thursday" is doing the same thing, even if we don't repeat the subject or the verb.

But watch what happens when I throw a "that" in: "Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than that on Thursday." At best the "that" is unnecessary, as we've already established that the sentence works just fine without it. Worse, if "that" refers to "pie," it kind of sounds like we're saying that Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than the pie ate on Thursday! No one should have to live in a world in which pie cannibalism is rampant.

Same kind of weirdness in (D): "Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than that in a similar period a year earlier." We're trying to compare the circulation these newspapers had in one period to what they had in another. The repeated "in" makes this clear without the use of "that." And if "that" refers to "circulation," it seems as though the biggest newspapers had a lower circulation in one period than the circulation had in another period.

If introducing extraneous words is either unnecessary or confusing, we'd rather not do it, and so (D) is an inferior option to (C).

Put another way, we want to avoid an overly rigid approach when we're evaluating an option. Rather than thinking "well, I saw this word earlier, so I have to see the same word later!" we want to consider what a given construction does to the meaning and clarity of the sentence, while taking the context into account.

I hope that helps!



thank you for this explanation. but consider the following question (from og), with OA being choice B

Prices at the producer level are only 1.3 percent higher now than a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the south are hurting crops and therefore raised corn and soybean prices.


(A) than a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the south are hurting crops and therefore raised

(B) than those of a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the south are hurting crops and therefore raising

(C) than a year ago and are going down, despite floods in the Midwest and drought in the south, and are hurting crops and therefore raising

(D) as those of a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the south hurt crops and therefore raise

(E) as they were a year ago and are going down, despite floods in the Midwest and drought in the south, and are hurting crops and therefore raising

the above question contain "those" in official question B. I think "those" is not good here . but 'those' is in official question because other choices contain clear errors.
my conclusion is that " those", if it is inserted mistakenly, is minor error.

pls, comment on above point. thank you

As described in this post and this one, there is no problem with the usage of "those" in the example you cited. (If that's unclear, please post follow-up questions in the thread for that particular question.)

But in choice (D) in this thread, the use of "that" is more than a minor issue -- it changes the meaning in a way that is very problematic, as described in my last post.

I hope this helps!
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 10 May 2019, 14:56
Hello Everyone!

This looks like a pretty straightforward GMAT question that deals with comparisons! Let's start off by doing a quick scan over the question, and highlight any major differences in orange:

Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than a similar period a year earlier.

(A) a similar period
(B) a similar period’s
(C) in a similar period
(D) that in a similar period
(E) that of a similar period

After a quick glance at the question, a couple differences jump out:

1. a similar / in a similar / that in a similar / that of a similar (Idioms & Parallelism)
2. period / period's (Meaning)


Let's start with #1 on our list: idioms & parallelism. If we look at the entire sentence, we see that this is a comparison that uses the following idiom:

X lower than Y

To make sure we know what X and Y are in the sentence, let's look at the entire original sentence:

Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than a similar period a year earlier.

The idiom in this case is constructed a little different than the original, but the rules still apply:

had lower circulation X than Y

We can also determine that X is "in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996." So whichever option we choose must be parallel to our X. To make this easier to spot, let's add in some more of the original comparison:

(A) had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than a similar period a year earlier. --> NOT PARALLEL (It doesn't repeat the word "in" at the beginning of both X and Y.)

(B) had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than a similar period’s a year earlier. --> NOT PARALLEL (It doesn't repeat the word "in" at the beginning of both X and Y. Also, making "period's" possessive, it changes the meaning. This is now comparing a period of time to some other thing that exists in the other period, which isn't parallel.)

(C) had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than in a similar period a year earlier. --> PARALLEL

(D) had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than that in a similar period a year earlier. --> NOT PARALLEL (The two items being compared aren't parallel: a period of time vs. "that" in a period of time. It's also not clear what the pronoun "that" is referring to.)

(E) had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than that of a similar period a year earlier. --> NOT PARALLEL (The two items being compared aren't parallel: a period of time vs. "that of" a period of time. It's also not clear what the pronoun "that" is referring to.)

There you have it - option C is the only one that uses parallelism when comparing two periods of time! If you can spot comparison questions quickly on the GMAT, you can start with parallelism to narrow down your options significantly - and quickly!


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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Jun 2019, 15:59
chetan2u wrote:
AbdurRakib wrote:
Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than a similar period a year earlier.
A. a similar period
B. a similar period’s
C. in a similar period
D. that in a similar period
E. that of a similar period


The Official Guide for GMAT Review 2018

Practice Question
Sentence Correction
Question No.: 784




Hi

What are we comparing ...
Positioning of circulation as part of 'lower circulation' should get you close to the answer..

So we are comparing circulation in TWO periods..

1) A and B wrongly compare a period directly to the circulation...
2) C and D get the preposition in to make a prepositional phrase..

Now in D what does THAT stand for- lower circulation. Substitute for THAT and see if the sentence makes sense.

Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than lower circulation in a similar period a year earlier.

So what we do is - compare two periods as part of prepositional phrase...
" in the six months....." Is parallel to " in similar period ...."

Ans C






Hi,

referring to option D:
that is a pronoun and should refer to the corresponding noun, so why is that referring the lower circulation instead of circulation ?
in my opinion that should only refer to circulation
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jun 2019, 19:14
I chose D, but now I understood why D is incorrect. Grammatically it is correct but we are comparing two periods not circulations.
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Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jun 2019, 19:27
Hi Experts,

I am facing a doubt while comparing the noun in this setence. IMO, Option A can also be correct as "circulation" is compared to " a similar period" which does not make sense. Hence, logically, " a similar period" will be compared to the other time period in the sentence.

Yes, putting a preposition like in Option C removes the ambiguity, but if Option C was not there, then Option A would be correct.

Please let me know if my thinking is on the right track or if I am comparing wrong noun entities?
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Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jun 2019, 11:53
prashaant2089 wrote:
Hi Experts,

I am facing a doubt while comparing the noun in this setence. IMO, Option A can also be correct as "circulation" is compared to " a similar period" which does not make sense. Hence, logically, " a similar period" will be compared to the other time period in the sentence.

Yes, putting a preposition like in Option C removes the ambiguity, but if Option C was not there, then Option A would be correct.

Please let me know if my thinking is on the right track or if I am comparing wrong noun entities?


Hello prashaant2089!

In option A, it is not comparing circulation to a time period - the circulation is the basis for the comparison, but the actual items being compared are two time periods.

The preposition "in" in option C makes the two items parallel - it has nothing to do with ambiguity. Option A would still be incorrect because it's not parallel. I guess if it was the ONLY other option left, it might be the best choice you have, but that's not how the GMAT works. The GMAT will give you a correct answer, especially if parallelism is one of the concepts it's testing you on with that sentence. They won't leave you with a clearly wrong answer that's "good enough."

I hope that helps clear things up!
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jul 2019, 16:29
I do not understand why option E is not correct, and making a comparison with the following question, why the option with the "those of" is correct in this new question?
2018 book question: 758
Prices at the producer level are only 1.3 percent higher now than a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the South are hurting crops and therefore raised corn and soybean prices.
A. than a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the South are hurting crops and therefore raised
B. than those of a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the South are hurting crops and therefore raising CORRECT
C. than a year ago and are going down, despite floods in the Midwest and drought in the South, and are hurting crops and therefore raising
D. as those of a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the South hurt crops and therefore raise
E. as they were a year ago and are going down, despite floods in the Midwest and drought in the South, and are hurting crops and therefore raising
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Jul 2019, 05:59
this is one more terrible comparison question. I am confused between choice c and d.
possibly, we should remember one pattern of comparison in which "that/those" is not necessary.
I want to say something of choice d.
"that in a similar period a year earlier". if we write this way, "in a similar period a year earlier " modifies "that", which is "circulation" and, so, works as adjective. but in the preceding part of comparison, " in the six month...." work as an adverb. this is not parallel and, so, will make illogical meaning.
so, the sentence is
most daily newspaper had lower circulation in this period than the circulation in latter period had lowe circulation.

to make logic comparison, the 2 corresponding elements must be of the same grammatical role in the 2 clauses . this is to make logic parallelism and comparison.

choice d change the phrase "in the similar period" into adjective phrase and make unparalleled illogical comparison.

so, in this case, "that/those" destroy logical comparison and should be cut off.

am i correct?
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jul 2019, 16:41
LinaZ wrote:
I do not understand why option E is not correct, and making a comparison with the following question, why the option with the "those of" is correct in this new question?
2018 book question: 758
Prices at the producer level are only 1.3 percent higher now than a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the South are hurting crops and therefore raised corn and soybean prices.
A. than a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the South are hurting crops and therefore raised
B. than those of a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the South are hurting crops and therefore raising CORRECT
C. than a year ago and are going down, despite floods in the Midwest and drought in the South, and are hurting crops and therefore raising
D. as those of a year ago and are going down, even though floods in the Midwest and drought in the South hurt crops and therefore raise
E. as they were a year ago and are going down, despite floods in the Midwest and drought in the South, and are hurting crops and therefore raising

Excellent question! I don't think the comparison in (E) is wrong, necessarily. There are two far more conspicuous errors.

First, take a look at (E) again:

    "Prices at the producer level are only 1.3 percent higher now as..."

The phrase "higher... than" is correct, but "higher...as" is an idiomatic error. That's enough to give (E) the boot.

But imagine that you didn't see the idiom issue. Notice that we also have the parallel marker "and." This should connect similar forms, so when we see "and are hurting crops" in (E), this verb phrase appears to be parallel to "are going down."

But now we have the following:

    "they [the prices]....are going down....and are hurting crops..."

The prices aren't hurting crops! It makes far more sense to write that floods and drought are the culprits, as (B) suggests, so (E) has a logical error as well.

I hope that helps!
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Aug 2019, 02:45
GMATNinja wrote:
Mystery123 wrote:
GMATNinja

Just a quick question


I read your post of 03/2018, and I have a doubt between D and C, as non-native in English.

I don't understand why is a waste of words to repeat "circulation". I have learned that Gmat prefers parallelism, and in many exercises I have found that is necessary to repeat the noun in order to make the sentence "parallel". As "that" in D is so much separated of the word "circulation", I understand that the word "that" is necessary.



Could you provide an explanation "conceptual" of parallelism (such as a "rule" to distinguish when is a "waste of words" and when is necessary to repeat the noun), please?


Thank you

Excellent question! To see why the pronoun "that" can sometimes muddle the meaning of the sentence, consider a simple example, "Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than on Thursday." This makes perfect sense. Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than he ate on Thursday. Because the first prepositional phrase, "on Tuesday" modifies when Johnny ate pie, it's perfectly logical to assume the second one, "on Thursday" is doing the same thing, even if we don't repeat the subject or the verb.

But watch what happens when I throw a "that" in: "Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than that on Thursday." At best the "that" is unnecessary, as we've already established that the sentence works just fine without it. Worse, if "that" refers to "pie," it kind of sounds like we're saying that Johnny ate more pie on Tuesday than the pie ate on Thursday! No one should have to live in a world in which pie cannibalism is rampant.

Same kind of weirdness in (D): "Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than that in a similar period a year earlier." We're trying to compare the circulation these newspapers had in one period to what they had in another. The repeated "in" makes this clear without the use of "that." And if "that" refers to "circulation," it seems as though the biggest newspapers had a lower circulation in one period than the circulation had in another period.

If introducing extraneous words is either unnecessary or confusing, we'd rather not do it, and so (D) is an inferior option to (C).

Put another way, we want to avoid an overly rigid approach when we're evaluating an option. Rather than thinking "well, I saw this word earlier, so I have to see the same word later!" we want to consider what a given construction does to the meaning and clarity of the sentence, while taking the context into account.

I hope that helps!


thank you expert. your above explanation is great. I post another comparison question for us to discuss.
I can conclude that. inserting of "that" "those' can make confusion and can be a reason for elimination. but I think the inserting of "that,those" can best be considered INFERIOR. this mean if we have a better choice, inferior pattern is incorrect. and if there is another clearer error, inferior pattern can be correct.
thinking this way permit us to deal with the choice with "that,those" effectively.

in the following question. inserting "those" makes confusion, which mean " than those charging charge". parallelism is the vehicle to make logic comparison. we can not have logical comparison without parallelism. perfect parallelism or nearly perfect parallelism help create logic.

According to a 1996 survey by the National Association of College and University Business Officers, more than three times as many independent institutions of higher education charge tuition and fees of under $8,000 a year than those that charge over $16,000.

(A) than those that charge
(B) than are charging
(C) than to charge
(D) as charge
(E) as those charging
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Aug 2019, 01:02
permit me to post one time more.
after a few days thinking over this problem. i realize that when objects of 2 clauses are compared, we have a difficult case.
we use parallel pattern and ellipsis to make comparison logic. ellipsis must be good enough to make no misunderstanding and ambiguity.

we can use
that/those
it/they
zero subject in the second clause of comparison or even zero second clause. this mean the second clause can have no subject or there is no second clause

if subjects of 2 clauses are compared, this case is easy.
if two contexts presented by 2 adverbs are compared, we have easy case
but if two objects of the 2 clauses are compared, we have hard case.

why hard case. because we do not realize a wrong ellipsis.
come back to our problem.

the daily newspapers have lower circulation this period than the circulation the daily newspaper had in previous period.

above think are meaning.it is hard to realize that we compare circulations of two periods.

above sentence can be
the daily newspaper have lower circulation this period than in previous period.

the old circulation is compared with the new circulation. the problem is here. we need A TOTAL CLAUSE TO MODIFY THE COMPARED ELEMENT. this case happen when objects are compared.
in this case, two way of writing comparison sentence: 1 write full sentence, 2: write only adverb of the new second clause.

there is no third way

if the two compared elements are modified by two preposition phrase,not full clause, we use 'that/those".
the book on the table is thicker than THAT on the shelf .

we can not use "that" in choice d because "that", "circulation" in choice D need a full clause to modify . "in a similar period" is modifying "that" grammatically and this is not logical.

when we compare two objects, each modified by a full clause, the only ellipsis we can do is to keep only the adverb of the second clause. the second elements of comparison need a full clause with new adverb to modify. the second element of comparison is not "circulation" but "circulation the newspaper had in similar period".

OLDEN RULE. which help you out in every comparison sentence.
if compared nouns need a full clause to modify, we keep only adverb
if compared noun need a preposition phrase to modify, we use "that/those".
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Nov 2019, 09:42
XYZ's newspaper circulation in 2008 was lower than in 2009.
XYZ's newspaper circulation in 2008 was lower than that in 2009.

can someone let me know if both of the above constructions are right?
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Mar 2020, 23:14
jkbk1732 wrote:
XYZ's newspaper circulation in 2008 was lower than in 2009.
XYZ's newspaper circulation in 2008 was lower than that in 2009.

can someone let me know if both of the above constructions are right?

jkbk1732
2nd one correct.
XYZ's newspaper circulation in 2008 was lower than in 2009.
is wrong because 'than' signifies a comparison for which parallelism must be there.
Here in Newspaper circulation(X) in 2008 was(verb) lower(comparison marker) than(parallelism marker) Y in 2009, Y is missing which should be similar in structure to X.

2nd sentence rectifies that by using a relative pronoun 'that'. You may also use 'newspaper circulation' again here and see for yourself but it will lose on conciseness, however, workable.
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Jun 2020, 05:58
sayantanc2k wrote:
DH99 wrote:
@Experts, Please help with this: Why option D is wrong and C correct?


The correct comparisons are as follows:

Structure 1:
Comparing "circulation" with "circulation" - The circulation in period X is more than the circulation in period Y. OR The circulation in period X is more than that in period Y.

Structure 2:
Comparing 2 periods - The circulation is more in period X than in period Y. In this case the use of "that" to replace "circulation" would be incorrect.

The subject sentence has the structure 2.


Thanks a lot, sayantanc2k! Sounds like we're comparing two different things here: 1 is comparing Subject; 2 is comparing Adverbial Modifer
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Jun 2020, 11:10
GMATNinja wrote:
The heart of this question is that we’re trying to compare the fact that the newspapers had a lower circulation “in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996” than… well, we’re trying to compare the circulation in one period to the circulation “in a similar period”, so that should lead us to the right answer pretty quickly.

Quote:
(A) a similar period

The comparison isn’t quite right here. The newspapers “had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than a similar period a year earlier.” Nope, we would need to say that the circulation was lower in a similar period for this to make sense.

(A) is out.

Quote:
(B) a similar period’s

(B) basically gives us the same mistake as (A), except that now “period’s” is possessive. I guess it’s trying to possess “circulation”? Can a “period” possess “circulation”? Seems wacky to me.

Even if we give it the benefit of the doubt, that leaves us with “… newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than a similar period’s circulation a year earlier.” That’s not completely illogical, I guess, but it doesn’t cut to the heart of the comparison – we’re trying to emphasize the difference in circulation in the two periods. And that possessive thing still strikes me as weird.

If you really wanted to be conservative, you could keep (B), but we’ll have a better option in a moment.

Quote:
(C) in a similar period

This is about as clear as it can get: “… newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than in a similar period a year earlier.” That cleanly compares the circulation in one period with circulation in another.

So let’s keep (C).

Quote:
(D) that in a similar period

In this context, “that” is trying to act as a singular pronoun. (More on the GMAT’s many uses of “that” in this article.) I guess “that” refers back to circulation, so that gives us: “… newspapers had lower circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 than the circulation in a similar period a year earlier.”

That’s not necessarily illogical, but it’s a waste of words. (C) is more succinct, and I can’t figure out why we would need to repeat the word “circulation” – or a pronoun that refers back to the word “circulation” – in this sentence.

So (C) is still better than (D).

Quote:
(E) that of a similar period

And (E) is just a crappier version of (D). There’s no need to include the word “that” here, but it also doesn’t make sense to talk about “the circulation of a similar period.” We could talk about “the circulation of a newspaper”, because the newspaper itself “circulates” (i.e., the newspaper is distributed among the population), but we wouldn’t circulate “a period.”

So (E) is out, and we’re left with (C).


Hi GMATNinja,

Can't we assume that "in" is implied in option A as part of ellipses?
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Jul 2020, 16:39
shanks2020 wrote:
Hi GMATNinja,

Can't we assume that "in" is implied in option A as part of ellipses?

Omitting the "in" allows us to interpret the sentence in an illogical way:

  • "Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation {...} than a similar period a year earlier." - This essentially boils down to the "[X] had lower circulation than [Y]," and it seems like we are comparing the circulation of X ("most of the country's biggest daily newspapers") to the circulation of Y ("a similar period").
  • But we actually want to compare X's circulation in the six months from October 1995 through March 1996 to X's circulation in a similar period.
  • Is (A) okay if we assume that there is an implied "in" after "than"? Well, yes. Trouble is, if the reader doesn't make that assumption, the sentence doesn't make any sense.

So we have to choose between (A) -- an option that COULD make sense if read one way and not another -- and (C), an option that has only one interpretation. Since the only reasonable interpretation of (C) makes perfect sense, (C) is a much better choice.

I hope that helps!
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Re: Most of the country’s biggest daily newspapers had lower circulation   [#permalink] 05 Jul 2020, 16:39

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