Reasoning for Bank Exams (Part 3)

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Critical Reasoning for Bank Recruitment Exams (Part 3) 

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  1. Throughout the 1950's, there were increases in the numbers of dead birds found in agricultural areas after pesticide sprayings. Pesticide manufacturers claimed that the publicity given to bird deaths stimulated volunteers to look for dead birds, and that the increase in numbers reported was attributable to the increase in the number of people looking.
Which of the following statements, if true, would help to refute the claim of the pesticide manufacturers?
    1. The publicity given to bird deaths was largely regional and never reached national proportions.
    2. Pesticide sprayings were timed to coincide with various phases of the life cycles of the insects they destroyed.
    3. No provision was made to ensure that a dead bird would not be reported by more than one observer.
    4. Initial increases in bird deaths had been noticed by agricultural workers long before any publicity had been given to the matter.
    5. Dead birds of the same species as those found in agricultural areas had been found along coastal areas where no farming took place.
Answer : D


  1. Which of the following best completes the passage below?
The computer industry's estimate that it loses millions of dollars when users illegally copy programs without paying for them is greatly exaggerated. Most of the illegal copying is done by people with no serious interest in the programs. Thus, the loss to the industry is much smaller than estimated because
    1. many users who illegally copy programs never find any use for them
    2. most of the illegally copied programs would not be purchased even if purchasing them were the only way to obtain them
    3. even if the computer industry received all the revenue it claims to be losing, it would still be experiencing financial difficulties
    4. the total market value of all illegal copies is low in comparison to the total revenue of the computer industry
    5. the number of programs that are frequently copied illegally is low in comparison to the number of programs available for sale
Answer : B

  1. This year the New Hampshire Division of Company X, set a new record for annual sales by that division. This record is especially surprising since the New Hampshire Division has the smallest potential market and the lowest sales of any of Company X's divisions.
Which of the following identifies a flaw in the logical coherence of the statement above?
    1. If overall sales for Company X were sharply reduced, the New Hampshire Division's new sales record is irrelevant to the company's prosperity.
    2. Since the division is competing against its own record, the comparison of its sales record with that of other divisions is irrelevant.
    3. If this is the first year that the New Hampshire Division has been last in sales among Company X's divisions, the new record is not surprising at all.
    4. If overall sales for Company X were greater than usual, it is not surprising that the New Hampshire Division was last in sales.
    5. Since the New Hampshire Division has the smallest potential market, it is not surprising that it had the lowest sales.
Answer : B

  1. Statement of a United States copper mining company: Import quotas should be imposed on the less expensive copper mined outside the country to maintain the price of copper in this country; otherwise, our companies will not be able to stay in business. Response of a United States copper wire manufacturer: United States wire and cable manufacturers purchase about 70 percent of the copper mined in the United States. If the copper prices we pay are not at the international level, our sales will drop, and then the demand for United States copper will go down.
If the factual information presented by both companies is accurate, the best assessment of the logical relationship between the two arguments is that the wire manufacturer's argument
    1. is self-serving and irrelevant to the proposal of the mining company
    2. is circular, presupposing what it seeks to prove about the proposal of the mining company
    3. shows that the proposal of the mining company would have a negative effect on the mining company's own business
    4. fails to give a reason why the proposal of the mining company should not be put into effect to alleviate the concern of the mining company for staying in business
    5. establishes that even the mining company's business will prosper if the mining company's proposal is rejected
Answer : C

  1. Y has been believed to cause Z. A new report, noting that Y and Z are often observed to be preceded by X, suggests that X, not Y, may be the cause of Z.
Which of the following further observations would best support the new report's suggestion?
    1. In cases where X occurs but Y does not, X is usually followed by Z.
    2. In cases where X occurs, followed by Y, Y is usually followed by Z.
    3. In cases where Y occurs but X does not, Y is usually followed by Z.
    4. In cases where Y occurs but Z does not, Y is usually preceded by X.
    5. In cases where Z occurs, it is usually preceded by X and Y.
Answer : A

  1. Mr. Primm: If hospitals were private enterprises, dependent on profits for their survival, there would be no teaching hospitals, because of the intrinsically high cost of running such hospitals.                                    
    Ms. Nakai: I disagree. The medical challenges provided by teaching hospitals attract the very best physicians. This, in turn, enables those hospitals to concentrate on nonroutine cases.
Which of the following, if true, would most strengthen Ms. Nakai's attempt to refute Mr. Primm's claim?
    1. Doctors at teaching hospitals command high salaries.
    2. Sophisticated, nonroutine medical care commands a high price.
    3. Existing teaching hospitals derive some revenue from public subsidies.
    4. The patient mortality rate at teaching hospitals is high.
    5. The modern trend among physicians is to become highly specialized.
Answer : B



  1. A recent survey of all auto accident victims in Dole County found that, of the severely injured drivers and front-seat passengers, 80 percent were not wearing seat belts at the time of their accidents. This indicates that, by wearing seat belts, drivers and front-seat passengers can greatly reduce their risk of being severely injured if they are in an auto accident.
The conclusion above is not properly drawn unless which of the following is true?
    1. Of all the drivers and front-seat passengers in the survey, more than 20 percent were wearing seat belts at the time of their accidents.
    2. Considerably more than 20 percent of drivers and front-seat passengers in Dole County always wear seat belts when traveling by car.
    3. More drivers and front-seat passengers in the survey than rear-seat passengers were very severely injured.
    4. More than half of the drivers and front-seat passengers in the survey were not wearing seat belts at the time of their accidents.
    5. Most of the auto accidents reported to police in Dole County do not involve any serious injury.
Answer : A

  1. Six months or so after getting a video recorder, many early buyers apparently lost interest in obtaining videos to watch on it. The trade of businesses selling and renting videos is still buoyant, because the number of homes with video recorders is still growing. But clearly, once the market for video recorders is saturated, businesses distributing videos face hard times.
Which of the following, if true, would most seriously weaken the conclusion above?
    1. The market for video recorders would not be considered saturated until there was one in 80 percent of homes.
    2. Among the items handled by video distributors are many films specifically produced as video features.
    3. Few of the early buyers of video recorders raised any complaints about performance aspects of the new product.
    4. The early buyers of a novel product are always people who are quick to acquire novelties, but also often as quick to tire of them.
    5. In a shrinking market, competition always intensifies and marginal businesses fail.
Answer : D

  1. Advertiser: The revenue that newspapers and magazines earn by publishing advertisements allows publishers to keep the pricesper copy of their publications much lower than would otherwise be possible. Therefore, consumers benefit economically from advertising.
    Consumer: But who pays for the advertising that pays for low-priced newspapers and magazines?
    We consumers do, because advertisers pass along advertising costs to us through the higher prices they charge for their products.
Which of the following best describes how the consumer counters the advertiser's argument?
    1. By alleging something that, if true, would weaken the plausibility of the advertiser's conclusion
    2. By questioning the truth of the purportedly factual statement on which the advertiser's conclusion is based
    3. By offering an interpretation of the advertiser's opening statement that, if accurate, shows that there is an implicit contradiction in it
    4. By pointing out that the advertiser's point of view is biased
    5. By arguing that the advertiser too narrowly restricts the discussion to the effects of advertising that are economic
Answer : A

  1. Mr. Lawson: We should adopt a national family policy that includes legislation requiring employers to provide paid parental leave and establishing government-sponsored day care. Such laws would decrease the stress levels of employees who have responsibility for small children. Thus, such laws would lead to happier, better-adjusted families.
Which of the following, if true, would most strengthen the conclusion above?
    1. An employee's high stress level can be a cause of unhappiness and poor adjustment for his or her family.
    2. People who have responsibility for small children and who work outside the home have higher stress levels than those who do not.
    3. The goal of a national family policy is to lower the stress levels of parents.
    4. Any national family policy that is adopted would include legislation requiring employers to provide paid parental leave and establishing government-sponsored day care.
    5. Most children who have been cared for in daycare centers are happy and well adjusted.
Answer : A

  1. Lark Manufacturing Company initiated a voluntary Quality Circles program for machine operators. Independent surveys of employee attitudes indicated that the machine operators participating in the program were less satisfied with their work situations after two years of the program's existence than they were at the program's start. Obviously, any workers who participate in a Quality Circles program will, as a result, become less satisfied with their jobs.


Each of the following, if true, would weaken the conclusion drawn above EXCETP:
    1. The second survey occurred during a period of recession when rumors of cutbacks and layoffs at Lark Manufacturing were plentiful .
    2. The surveys also showed that those Lark machine operators who neither participated in Quality Circles nor knew anyone who did so reported the same degree of lessened satisfaction with their work situations as did the Lark machine operators who participated in Quality Circles.
    3. While participating in Quality Circles at Lark Manufacturing, machine operators exhibited two of the primary indicators of improved job satisfaction: increased productivity and decreased absenteeism.
    4. Several workers at Lark Manufacturing who had participated in Quality Circles while employed at other companies reported that, while participating in Quality Circles in their previous companies, their work satisfaction had increased.
    5. The machine operators who participated in Quality Circles reported that, when the program started, they felt that participation might improve their work situations.
Answer : E

Questions 12-13 are based on the following.
Blood banks will shortly start to screen all donors for NANB hepatitis. Although the new screening tests are estimated to disqualify up to 5 percent of all prospective blood donors, they will still miss two-thirds of donors carrying NANB hepatitis. Therefore, about 10 percent of actual donors will still supply NANB-contaminated blood.

  1. The argument above depends on which of the following assumptions?
    1. Donors carrying NANB hepatitis do not, in a large percentage of cases, carry other infections for which reliable screening tests are routinely performed.
    2. Donors carrying NANB hepatitis do not, in a large percentage of cases, develop the disease themselves at any point.
    3. The estimate of the number of donors who would be disqualified by tests for NANB hepatitis is an underestimate.
    4. The incidence of NANB hepatitis is lower among the potential blood donors than it is in the population at large.
    5. The donors who will still supply NANB-contaminated blood will donate blood at the average frequency for all donors.
Answer : A

  1. Which of the following inferences about the conse-quences of instituting the new tests is best supported by the passage above?
    1. The incidence of new cases of NANB hepatitis is likely to go up by 10 percent.
    2. Donations made by patients specifically for their own use are likely to become less frequent.
    3. The demand for blood from blood banks is likely to fluctuate more strongly.
    4. The blood supplies available from blood banks are likely to go down.
    5. The number of prospective first-time donors is likely to go up by 5 percent.
Answer : D

  1. Child's World, a chain of toy stores, has relied on a "supermarket concept" of computerized inventory control and customer self-service to eliminate the category of sales clerks from its force of employees. It now plans to employ the same concept in selling children's clothes. The plan of Child's World assumes that
    1. supermarkets will not also be selling children's clothes in the same manner
    2. personal service by sales personnel is not required for selling children's clothes successfully
    3. the same kind of computers will be used in inventory control for both clothes and toys at Child's World
    4. a self-service plan cannot be employed without computerized inventory control
    5. sales clerks are the only employees of Child's World who could be assigned tasks related to inventory control
Answer : B

  1. Continuous indoor fluorescent light benefits the health of hamsters with inherited heart disease. A group of them exposed to continuous fluorescent light survived twenty-five percent longer than a similar group exposed instead to equal periods of indoor fluorescent light and of darkness.
The method of the research described above is most likely to be applicable in addressing which of the following questions?
    1. Can industrial workers who need to see their work do so better by sunlight or by fluorescent light?
    2. Can hospital lighting be improved to promote the recovery of patients?
    3. How do deep-sea fish survive in total darkness?
    4. What are the inherited illnesses to which hamsters are subject?
    5. Are there plants that require specific periods of darkness in order to bloom?
Answer : B

  1. Millions of identical copies of a plant can be produced using new tissue-culture and cloning techniques.
If plant propagation by such methods in laboratories proves economical, each of the following, if true, represents a benefit of the new techniques to farmers EXCEPT:


    1. The techniques allow the development of superior strains to take place more rapidly, requiring fewer generations of plants grown to maturity.
    2. It is less difficult to care for plants that will grow at rates that do not vary widely.
    3. Plant diseases and pests, once they take hold, spread more rapidly among genetically uniform plants than among those with genetic variations.
    4. Mechanical harvesting of crops is less difficult if plants are more uniform in size.
    5. Special genetic traits can more easily be introduced into plant strains with the use of the new techniques.
Answer : C

  1. Which of the following best completes the passage below? Sales campaigns aimed at the faltering personal computer market have strongly emphasized ease of use, called user-friendliness. This emphasis is oddly premature and irrelevant in the eyes of most potential buyers, who are trying to address the logically prior issue of whether
    1. user-friendliness also implies that owners can service their own computers
    2. personal computers cost more the more user-friendly they are
    3. currently available models are user-friendly enough to suit them
    4. the people promoting personal computers use them in their own homes
    5. they have enough sensible uses for a personal computer to justify the expense of buying one
Answer : E

  1. A weapons-smuggling incident recently took place in country Y. We all know that Y is a closed society. So Y's government must have known about the weapons.
Which of the following is an assumption that would make the conclusion above logically correct?
    1. If a government knows about a particular weapons-smuggling incident, it must have intended to use the weapons for its own purposes.
    2. If a government claims that it knew nothing about a particular weapons-smuggling incident, it must have known everything about it.
    3. If a government does not permit weapons to enter a country, it is a closed society.
    4. If a country is a closed society, its government has a large contingent of armed guards patrolling its borders.
    5. If a country is a closed society, its government has knowledge about everything that occurs in the country.
Answer : E

  1. Banning cigarette advertisements in the mass media will not reduce the number of young people who smoke. They know that cigarettes exist and they know how to get them. They do not need the advertisements to supply that information.
The above argument would be most weakened if which of the following were true?
    1. Seeing or hearing an advertisement for a product tends to increase people's desire for that product.
    2. Banning cigarette advertisements in the mass media will cause an increase in advertisements in places where cigarettes are sold.
    3. Advertisements in the mass media have been an exceedingly large part of the expenditures of the tobacco companies.
    4. Those who oppose cigarette use have advertised against it in the mass media ever since cigarettes were found to be harmful.
    5. Older people tend to be less influenced by mass-media advertisements than younger people tend to be.
Answer : A

  1. People tend to estimate the likelihood of an event's occurrence according to its salience; that is, according to how strongly and how often it comes to their attention.
    By placement and headlines, newspapers emphasize stories about local crime over stories about crime elsewhere and about many other major events.
It can be concluded on the basis of the statements above that, if they are true, which of the following is most probably also true?
    1. The language used in newspaper headlines about local crime is inflammatory and fails to respect the rights of suspects.
    2. The coverage of international events in newspapers is neglected in favor of the coverage of local events.
    3. Readers of local news in newspapers tend to overestimate the amount of crime in their own localities relative to the amount of crime in other places.
    4. None of the events concerning other people that are reported in newspapers is so salient in people's minds as their own personal experiences.
    5. The press is the news medium that focuses people's attention most strongly on local crimes.
Answer : C


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