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The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was

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The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 10 Oct 2018, 22:32
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The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987. If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.

The argument in the passage depends on which of the following assumptions?


(A) The supply of illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987.

(B) The price paid for most illegal drugs by the average consumer did not drop substantially in 1987.

(C) Domestic production of illegal drugs increased at a higher rate than did the entry of such drugs into the country.

(D) The wholesale price of a few illegal drugs increased substantially in 1987.

(E) A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.


Related question (weaken): https://gmatclub.com/forum/the-program- ... 37754.html

Originally posted by MBA2ran on 22 Dec 2006, 00:19.
Last edited by Bunuel on 10 Oct 2018, 22:32, edited 6 times in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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Re: The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Sep 2012, 03:54
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ankit0411 wrote:
carcass wrote:
The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987. If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.

The argument in the passage depends on which of the following assumptions?


1) The supply of illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987.

2)The price paid for most illegal drugs by the average consumer did not drop substantially in 1987.

3)Domestic production of illegal drugs increased at a higher rate than did the entry of such drugs into the country.

4)The wholesale price of a few illegal drugs increased substantially in 1987.

5)A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.

Guys try this one. OA later . Thanks for discussion in advance :)


Let me just try -

1) The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987 - The program was a failure

2) If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.

Thus, it means that the program was not successful ( there was illegal entry of drugs into the country) and hence, the prices dropped.

If I negate E - A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was THE sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.

okay - so if the price decrease was due to the drop in demand; the illegal entry of drugs was not the reason of their wholesale price decrease.

Am I right ?


Yes, you are right. If you use the assumption negation technique (ANT), you see that if the negative of option (E) is true, the conclusion cannot be true. Hence option (E) must be an assumption.
But let me add here that you should use ANT only when you get stuck or if you have doubts about the answer you have chosen. It is a little too complicated and time consuming to be used often.

The argument looks like this:
Premise: the wholesale price of most illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987
Conclusion: the program was a failure i.e. the supply of illegal drugs did not drop.

Now, the argument looks shady, doesn't it? The price drop could happen because of increased supply or reduced demand. The author is concluding that the price drop is due to increase in supply (and says nothing about demand).

What is his assumption? His assumption is that the demand did not reduce or if it did, it did not reduce to the extent required to bring the price substantially down. So he is assuming that a reduction in demand was not the cause or at least was not the sole cause of reduction in the price.

Answer (E)
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Re: The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2017, 10:53
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MBA2ran wrote:
The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987. If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.

13. The argument in the passage depends on which of the following assumptions?

(A) The supply of illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987.
(B) The price paid for most illegal drugs by the average consumer did not drop substantially in 1987.
(C) Domestic production of illegal drugs increased at a higher rate than did the entry of such drugs into the country.
(D) The wholesale price of a few illegal drugs increased substantially in 1987.
(E) A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.


While, generally, answering Critical Reasoning questions does not require the use of any sophisticated knowledge, understanding the logic of some Critical Reasoning questions requires a basic understanding of the economic laws of supply and demand. This question is such a question.

For anyone who is not familiar with the laws of supply and demand, here is a basic summary:

If the supply of a good increases and all other factors are held equal, normally the price of the good decreases. Conversely, if the supply of a good decreases, normally the price increases.

Demand affects price in the opposite way. If the demand for a good increases and all other factors are held equal, normally the price of the good increases. If demand decreases, normally the price decreases.

Now, let’s analyze the argument in this question.

The argument mentions a “program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country.” This program is related to the laws of supply and demand in that the purpose of the program is to reduce the supply of illegal drugs in the country by controlling the entry of the drugs.

As discussed above, a reduction in supply should result in an increase in price, but the argument indicates that “the wholesale prices of most illegal drugs… dropped substantially.” In other words, even though there was a program meant to reduce supply, the prices fell.

Since one would expect that a reduction in supply would result in price increases rather than price decreases, the author of the argument reasons that since the prices decreased, supply must not have decreased, and therefore, the argument concludes, the program must have failed.

Now, let’s go to the answer choices to see which the author assumed in coming to that conclusion.

(A) The supply of illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987.

Since the conclusion of the argument is that the program to reduce supply failed, this answer choice is not an assumption required for coming to that conclusion but rather is a statement in opposition to the conclusion.

(B) The price paid for most illegal drugs by the average consumer did not drop substantially in 1987.

This answer choice is incorrect in two ways.

The first is that the author is not concerned with the prices consumers pay, i.e., the retail prices of illegal drugs. The author is concerned with wholesale prices of illegal drugs and has already made the case that supply did not drop by pointing to the drop in wholesale prices.

The second is that the conclusion states that the program to reduce supply failed. Any drop in prices of illegal drugs would be consistent with that conclusion. Therefore, clearly, the argument does not rely on the assumption that the retail prices of illegal drugs did not drop.

(C) Domestic production of illegal drugs increased at a higher rate than did the entry of such drugs into the country.

This answer choice could be tempting because an increase in domestic production of illegal drugs would result in an increase in supply, even if there were a program in place to reduce supply from foreign sources by controlling entry of drugs into the country.

So, this answer choice could explain why, even though there was a program to reduce supply, the prices of illegal drugs decreased; supply from domestic sources could have offset any reduction in supply achieved by the program to limit entry.

However, we are not looking for an explanation. We are looking for an assumption. So, this choice is not our answer.

(D) The wholesale price of a few illegal drugs increased substantially in 1987.

The conclusion of the argument is that a program to reduce supply failed. Since a reduction in supply would push prices upward, price increases would indicate that the program to reduce supply had not failed but instead had succeeded. So, the conclusion does not depend on assuming that any prices of illegal drugs increased.

(E) A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.

Correct. The argument’s conclusion, that the program to reduce supply failed, is based on the fact that the prices of illegal drugs dropped. In arriving at its conclusion, the argument relies on the assumption that there was not some other reason for the decreases in the prices of illegal drugs. Therefore, that a drop in demand was not the sole cause of the price drop is an assumption upon which the argument depends.

The correct answer is E.
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Re: The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Dec 2006, 06:49
The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987. If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.

Here author is considering the program failure is the only cause for drop in prices.
13. The argument in the passage depends on which of the following assumptions?

(A) The supply of illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987.
(B) The price paid for most illegal drugs by the average consumer did not drop substantially in 1987.
(C) Domestic production of illegal drugs increased at a higher rate than did the entry of such drugs into the country.
(D) The wholesale price of a few illegal drugs increased substantially in 1987.
(E) A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.
( If failure of the program is the only cause for drop in prices then it is surely preassumed that " A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price." )
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Re: The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Sep 2012, 03:26
carcass wrote:
The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987. If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.

The argument in the passage depends on which of the following assumptions?


1) The supply of illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987.

2)The price paid for most illegal drugs by the average consumer did not drop substantially in 1987.

3)Domestic production of illegal drugs increased at a higher rate than did the entry of such drugs into the country.

4)The wholesale price of a few illegal drugs increased substantially in 1987.

5)A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.

Guys try this one. OA later . Thanks for discussion in advance :)


Let me just try -

1) The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987 - The program was a failure

2) If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.

Thus, it means that the program was not successful ( there was illegal entry of drugs into the country) and hence, the prices dropped.

If I negate E - A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was THE sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.

okay - so if the price decrease was due to the drop in demand; the illegal entry of drugs was not the reason of their wholesale price decrease.

Am I right ?
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Re: The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was  [#permalink]

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New post 31 Mar 2014, 11:26
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soniedarshan wrote:
The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in
1987. If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs
would not have dropped substantially in 1987.

The argument in the passage depends on which of the following
assumptions?

(A) The supply of illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987.
(B) The price paid for most illegal drugs by the average consumer did not drop
substantially in 1987.
(C) Domestic production of illegal drugs increased at a higher rate than did the entry
of such drugs into the country.
(D) The wholesale price of a few illegal drugs increased substantially in 1987.
(E) A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop
in their wholesale price.


E is correct. If you negate E, which becomes "Drop in demand WAS the sole cause of drop of wholesale price", the argument explodes into smithereens.
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Re: The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Sep 2018, 07:47
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MBA2ran wrote:
The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987. If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.

The argument in the passage depends on which of the following assumptions?

(A) The supply of illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987.
(B) The price paid for most illegal drugs by the average consumer did not drop substantially in 1987.
(C) Domestic production of illegal drugs increased at a higher rate than did the entry of such drugs into the country.
(D) The wholesale price of a few illegal drugs increased substantially in 1987.
(E) A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.



The only choice that must be true in order to conclude legitimately from the drop in wholesale price of illegal drugs that the program was a failure is choice E, the best answer. If the drop in price was caused by a drop in demand, there is no reason to suspect that there has been any increase in supply caused by drugs entering the country.

The other choices can be false without affecting the argument. The supply of illegal drugs need not have dropped (choice A), and the retail price could have dropped (choice B). The entry of illegal drugs could have risen at a higher rate than domestic production (choice C), and no illegal drug need have undergone a substantial price rise (choice D).
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Re: The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was &nbs [#permalink] 03 Sep 2018, 07:47
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