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The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a

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The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a brisk annual pace of 3.7 percent in the second quarter, but that while businesses were expanding their production, unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply.

(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply

(C) unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending

(D) consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves

(E) consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves

https://www.nytimes.com/1994/07/30/us/economy-is-up-3.7-but-signs-hint-of-slowing.html

In a report that cheered the Administration and financial markets for different reasons, the Commerce Department said today that the nation's economy grew at a brisk annual pace of 3.7 percent in the second quarter. But the report also showed that while businesses were expanding their production, unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply.

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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Jun 2018, 09:41
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Bunuel wrote:
The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a brisk annual pace of 3.7 percent in the second quarter, but that while businesses were expanding their production, unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply.


A. unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

B. unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply

C. unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending

D. consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves

E. consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves

https://www.nytimes.com/1994/07/30/us/economy-is-up-3.7-but-signs-hint-of-slowing.html





The action of reporting has been done in the past tense

Option A:

It uses "is slowly" which is incorrect as the sentence has been set in past tense
Also there is parallelsim issue in the expression
unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

Noun phrase(unsold goods piled up on store shelves) is not parallel to Clause here (Subj+Consumer spending,Verb -is slowed)

Option B:Correct choice

Option C:Incorrect usage of past perfect 'HAD'
Option D:Its the other way round...The piling of goods led to to the consumer prices rising sharply.
Option E:
1.For reason as in option D
2.consumer spending has slowed sharply--Incorrect tense..It imparts its effect in present as well..whereas the entire sentence is set in past tense.


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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Jun 2018, 10:35
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+1 for B.

A. unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

B. unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply --> Correct

C. unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending

D. consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves

E. consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Jun 2018, 10:45
The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a brisk annual pace of 3.7 percent in the second quarter, but that while businesses were expanding their production, unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply.

(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply

(C) unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending

(D) consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves

(E) consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves

Answer B.

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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jun 2018, 01:20
The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a brisk annual pace of 3.7 percent in the second quarter, but that while businesses were expanding their production, unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply.

The intended meaning of the sentence conveys economic growth and in contrast with some changes in business process.
The entire discussion is about a quarter in the past.
Notice the use of "as" - it has been used to state that both the even happened together sometime in the past.
Correct structure would be - were expanding....were piling up.....as ....slowed


(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply
piled up - simple past
is slowed - simple present.
Use of Verb tenses are incorrect.

(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply
were piling up - past continuous
slowed - past tense.
this is what we need.
This coveys the intended meaning. Hence Correct.


(C) unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending
use of past perfect is incorrect.

(D) consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves
was slowing is incorrect. And it doesn't covey intended meaning. Incorrect

(E) consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves
pilling up. ...is incorrect. It should be were piling up.
It also has meaning error.


Hence B is the CORRECT Choice
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 13 Jul 2018, 12:00
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Hello Everyone!

Let’s take a closer look at this question so we can narrow it down to the correct option.

The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a brisk annual pace of 3.7 percent in the second quarter, but that while businesses were expanding their production, unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply.

(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply
(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply
(C) unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending
(D) consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves
(E) consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves

After taking a quick glance over each of the options, two major differences jumped out to me that we must address:

1. Linking the two events with the words “as” or “with”
2. The verb “slow”: is slowed/slowed/slowing/was slowing/has slowed

Which item would eliminate the most options quickly? Number 1 - using “with” or “as” to link together both events. No matter which one you choose, it will knock off either 2 or 3 options immediately, giving you a better chance of finding the right one!

Since we are talking about two events that happen at the same time, it is best to use the word “as” to link them together.

The word “with” forces writers to use gerunds or awkward phrases like “with a sharp slowing of” or “with the piling up of.” So let’s eliminate answers C, D, and E right away because they don’t use the best word to connect the two events.

This leaves us with only A and B to choose from, which should make this an easier choice! Let’s focus on A and B, and look closely for any glaring problems in one or the other:

(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

Okay, so I already see a red flag in this answer! This sentence is discussing events that all happened in the past, yet this sentence uses the present tense “is slowed.” This answer is INCORRECT because it uses an improper verb tense!

(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply

This leaves us with only one option left, and it is the CORRECT answer. Answer B uses past tense verbs throughout (“were” and “slowed”), and it clearly shows that both events were happening at the same time.

There you go - option B is the correct answer!


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Originally posted by EMPOWERgmatVerbal on 23 Jun 2018, 16:01.
Last edited by EMPOWERgmatVerbal on 13 Jul 2018, 12:00, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2018, 09:04
EMPOWERgmatVerbal wrote:
Hello Everyone!

Let’s take a closer look at this question so we can narrow it down to the correct answer. After taking a quick glance over each of the answers, two major differences jumped out to me that we must address:

1. Linking the two events with the words “as” or “with”
2. The verb “slow”: is slowed/slowed/slowing/was slowing/has slowed

Which item would eliminate the most answers quickly? Number 1 - using “with” or “as” to link together both events. No matter which one you choose, it will knock off either 2 or 3 answers immediately, giving you a better chance of finding the right answer!

Since we are talking about two events that happen at the same time, it is best to use the word “as” to link them together. The word “with” forces writers to use gerunds or awkward phrases like “with a sharp slowing of” or “with the piling up of.” So let’s eliminate answers C, D, and E right away because they don’t use the best word to connect the two events.

This leaves us with only A and B to choose from, which should make this an easy choice! Let’s focus on A and B, and look closely for any glaring problems in one or the other:

(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

Okay, so I already see a red flag in this answer! This sentence is discussing events that all happened in the past, yet this sentence uses the present tense “is slowed.” This answer is INCORRECT because it uses an improper verb tense!

(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply

This leaves us with only one option left, and it is the CORRECT answer. Answer B uses past tense verbs throughout (“were” and “slowed”), and it clearly shows that both events were happening at the same time.


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In E, is the only error the fact that it uses "with" instead of as? what about "consumer spending has slowed sharply" part of E, is that okay?
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2018, 11:36
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In E, is the only error the fact that it uses "with" instead of as? what about "consumer spending has slowed sharply" part of E, is that okay?[/quote]

has slowed
sharply wasn't right here. The verb has slowed suggests a process that occurred in the recent past and impinges on the present, but this is not necessarily in "the second quarter". The verb tense does not match the the verb tense were expanding in the While-clause.
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2018, 12:20
vannj wrote:
In E, is the only error the fact that it uses "with" instead of as? what about "consumer spending has slowed sharply" part of E, is that okay?


has slowed
sharply wasn't right here. The verb has slowed suggests a process that occurred in the recent past and impinges on the present, but this is not necessarily in "the second quarter". The verb tense does not match the the verb tense were expanding in the While-clause.[/quote]

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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jul 2018, 13:13
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Hello!

Thank you for your question, oasis90!

Here's the original question, in case others want to follow along:

In E, is the only error the fact that it uses "with" instead of as? what about "consumer spending has slowed sharply" part of E, is that okay?


You are absolutely right - that's not the only problem with option E. In fact, incorrect options on the GMAT often have more than one problem with them. Sometimes, we can rule out incorrect options from different angles, and that's okay! We don't have to catch ALL of the problems with each option - if we catch an option that has a glaring problem, we toss that option aside and move on to finding the correct one.

I chose to start with "as" vs."with" because it's easy to spot during a simple glance over the options, and it is even easier to narrow it down to fewer options. If you wanted to, you could start by ruling out options that use the wrong form of the verb "to slow." We know these are past tense events, so you could start by ruling out options that don't use past tense correctly:

(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply --> WRONG (uses present tense)
(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply --> OK (uses past tense)
(C) unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending --> WRONG (uses a gerund instead of a past tense verb; when you have a past perfect "had piled up," you need a past tense event that uses plain past tense to go with it to show these are two events that happen in a particular order)
(D) consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves --> OK (uses past tense)
(E) consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves --> WRONG (uses present tense)

Either way you attack this GMAT question, you will still end up knocking out answer E because it has more than one problem with it.

If I were to continue with this, I would go back to the "with" vs. "as" issue, and that would still leave me tossing out option D. Even if we attack this question from different angles, we can still get to option B is the correct option.

I hope this helps! There is not a singular "right way" to answer a GMAT question, as long as it eventually leads to the right answer! :cool:
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jul 2018, 05:13
Hello Verbal Experts,

Please explain why option 'D' is not right. What possible errors option D has?

Thanks in advance!
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jul 2018, 05:16
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jul 2018, 05:27
Bunuel wrote:
XYZABCABC wrote:
Hello Verbal Experts,

Please explain why option 'D' is not right. What possible errors option D has?

Thanks in advance!


I think it's explained several times already. Please re-read the discussion again.


Is is just because of usage of "with"?

Here, "expanding" and "slowing" are parallel. Right?
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jul 2018, 09:48
Bunuel wrote:
The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a brisk annual pace of 3.7 percent in the second quarter, but that while businesses were expanding their production, unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply.

(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply

(C) unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending

(D) consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves

(E) consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves



GMATNinja
daagh
chetan2u

Can you please throw more light on why Option D and E are wrong.

I am really stuck at these options. Please help!
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jul 2018, 10:35
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XYZABCABC wrote:
Bunuel wrote:
The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a brisk annual pace of 3.7 percent in the second quarter, but that while businesses were expanding their production, unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply.

(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply

(C) unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending

(D) consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves

(E) consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves



GMATNinja
daagh
chetan2u

Can you please throw more light on why Option D and E are wrong.

I am really stuck at these options. Please help!


While businesses were expanding,.....
So we are talking of two SIMULTANEOUS actions. Thus the second action should parallel the first and should start the clause.
We can PARALLEL businesses with unsold goods, but businesses with consumer spending - may not be correct in the context here.
Although the verb tense is correct in D - was slowing, the sequence is not correct..
Unsold goods were piling up as consumer spending was slowing and not the other way as the choice D conveys. Consumer spending lowered with piling up of ...

Choice E is wrong in tense usage ..
Present perfect HAS is wrong and not PARALLEL with earlier verb.
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Re: The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jul 2018, 10:46
chetan2u wrote:
XYZABCABC wrote:
Bunuel wrote:
The Commerce Department reported that the nation's economy grew at a brisk annual pace of 3.7 percent in the second quarter, but that while businesses were expanding their production, unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply.

(A) unsold goods piled up on store shelves as consumer spending is slowed sharply

(B) unsold goods were piling up on store shelves as consumer spending slowed sharply

(C) unsold goods had piled up on store shelves with a sharp slowing of consumer spending

(D) consumer spending was slowing sharply, with the piling up of unsold goods on store shelves

(E) consumer spending has slowed sharply, with unsold goods piling up on store shelves



GMATNinja
daagh
chetan2u

Can you please throw more light on why Option D and E are wrong.

I am really stuck at these options. Please help!


While businesses were expanding,.....
So we are talking of two SIMULTANEOUS actions. Thus the second action should parallel the first and should start the clause.
We can PARALLEL businesses with unsold goods, but businesses with consumer spending - may not be correct in the context here.
Although the verb tense is correct in D - was slowing, the sequence is not correct..
Unsold goods were piling up as consumer spending was slowing and not the other way as the choice D conveys. Consumer spending lowered with piling up of ...

Choice E is wrong in tense usage ..
Present perfect HAS is wrong and not PARALLEL with earlier verb.



Thank you so much chetan2u for throwing light on the "sequence" thing. Makes the whole point clear!

So, can I say that Option D is grammatically correct but logically doesn't convey the intended meaning?
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