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## SC - home sales surging.

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goelmohit2002 Legendary Member
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#### SC - home sales surging.

Sat Sep 05, 2009 9:34 am
Hi All,

Following is the question#13 of OG-12.

OA = "A". For kicking out "C", OG says "The sentence offers no plural subject to fit the passive verb have been thought".

Can someone please tell why not we can kick out based on wrong tense....i.e. how present perfect is correct here....shouldn't we had past perfect here(i.e. had)

Also can someone please confirm me can we kick out D and E based on the fact that "comma + ing" setup should modify the entire previous clause....but since in D and E there is no entire clause before "suggesting"...so D and E can be kicked out based on this reason ?

A surge in new home sales and a drop in weekly unemployment claims suggest that the economy might not be as weak as some analysts previously thought.

A. claims suggest that the economy might not be as weak as some analysts previously thought
B. claims suggests that the economy might not be so weak as some analysts have previously thought
C. claims suggest that the economy might not be as weak as have been previously thought by some analysts
D. claims, suggesting about the economy that it might not be so weak as previously thought by some analysts
E. claims, suggesting the economy might not be as weak as previously thought to be by some analysts

harshavardhanc Legendary Member
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Sat Apr 03, 2010 1:24 am
vineetbatra wrote:
Harsha,

Thanks for the response. I am still at loss.

Can't I write But, it is not as weak as have been thought by Analysts. (passive)

My question is who thought that the economy would be weak, the analyst(s), so why singular.

I am not able to link Economy with have been thought.

Vineet
The correct sentence will be :

But, it is not as weak as has been thought by Analysts.

to decide between has been/have been you always look for the noun/pronoun before them. Not after.

One more method :

All these buildings has/have been made by a single woman, but that one has/have been made by 100 men.

Choose between has/have in the above construction and you'll get the point I'm trying to make.

How did you decide between has/have here?

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vineetbatra Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts
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Fri Apr 02, 2010 3:00 pm
Harsha,

Thanks for the response. I am still at loss.

Can't I write But, it is not as weak as have been thought by Analysts. (passive)

My question is who thought that the economy would be weak, the analyst(s), so why singular.

I am not able to link Economy with have been thought.

Vineet

scoobydooby Legendary Member
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Sat Sep 05, 2009 10:06 am
the OG explanation for C means: as economy is singular, "have been thought" is not correct as have is plural. we must use singular "has" to refer to the economy (economy has been thought)
"had been" is not required here as we are already using "previously" here to denote the prior past event.

D and E are out as the the sentences do not have any verb in them and as a result do not make any sense.
also the part before the comma is not a clause

goelmohit2002 Legendary Member
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Sat Sep 05, 2009 10:17 am
scoobydooby wrote:
the OG explanation for C means: as economy is singular, "have been thought" is not correct as have is plural. we must use singular "has" to refer to the economy (economy has been thought)
"had been" is not required here as we are already using "previously" here to denote the prior past event.
Thanks Scooby.

Can you please tell....would C be correct if it would have been like:

claims suggest that the economy might not be as weak as "has" been previously thought by some analysts

1) I guess it still would be incorrect....because of wrong tense i.e. present perfect....please correct me if I am wrong here....

2. or there is some other reason for modified C above to be wrong...

3. or modified C is correct ?

scoobydooby wrote:
D and E are out as the the sentences do not have any verb in them and as a result do not make any sense.
also the part before the comma is not a clause
Thanks Scooby for confirmation....I guess by above you mean to say that you too concur with my view about comma + ing + entire clause rule....

scoobydooby Legendary Member
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Sat Sep 05, 2009 10:56 am
guess "as has been previously thought" or
"as had been thought" would be ok.

the use of previously+had been seems redundant. as previously implies "had been"

the part before comma+ing not being a clause can be used to eliminate the options.

goelmohit2002 Legendary Member
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Sat Sep 05, 2009 10:46 pm
scoobydooby wrote:
guess "as has been previously thought" or
"as had been thought" would be ok.
hi scooby,

how can "has" be correct here....has mean still going activity....but it has to either simple past or "had" since thought is a completed activity...

Please tell what I am missing here....

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Stacey Koprince GMAT Instructor
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Wed Oct 07, 2009 11:24 am

We wouldn't use "has been previously thought." "Has been thought" is present perfect, which means that someone started thinking this in the past and they still think it today.

That meaning contradicts the word "previously," which indicates that the people in question no longer think (whatever) right now. They thought it previously - before now.

So this part of the sentence needs to be in some form of the past tense. The correct answer here uses simple past. If the sentence warranted past perfect, then you could also use that. But the word "previously," in this context does indicate that we need a past tense here.

And, yes, on D and E, you don't have a main sentence (core subject + verb) anywhere. The basic structure is:
, <-ing modifier>.

So the "something" part does need to be a complete sentence - the only other thing we've got is the modifier, and we have to have an independent clause somewhere in the sentence. In D and E, we don't have that, so eliminate.

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vineetbatra Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts
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Thu Apr 01, 2010 3:55 pm
Stacey,

For choice C the OG says "The sentence offers no plural subject to fit the passive verb have been thought"

I couldn't understand this part. In my understanding it was previously thought by Analysts, which is plural.

Can you please shed some light on this. I agree that we need a past tense though.

Vineet

iamcste Legendary Member
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Fri Apr 02, 2010 11:32 am
In addition to questions raised above, I have two questions. hope some one can help

1. If C were "claims suggest that the economy might not be as weak as previously thought by some analysts " would it be correct?

2. how does the subject "the economy" fit in the second part of the comparison in correct option A? how is the parallelism complete?

Is it "claims suggest that the economy might not be as weak as some analysts previously thought the economy to be" or something elese

harshavardhanc Legendary Member
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Fri Apr 02, 2010 1:02 pm
vineetbatra wrote:
Stacey,

For choice C the OG says "The sentence offers no plural subject to fit the passive verb have been thought"

I couldn't understand this part. In my understanding it was previously thought by Analysts, which is plural.

Can you please shed some light on this. I agree that we need a past tense though.

Vineet
I'm not Stacy, but would like to give you a hint.

Quote:
In my understanding it was previously thought by Analysts
in the sentence quoted above, the noun for which it has been used (economy) is singular and hence, have been thought
doesn't fit here.

So sentence says ::

Economy was thought to be weak by some analysts. But, it is not as weak as they thought.

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Harsha

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Stacey Koprince GMAT Instructor
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Mon Apr 05, 2010 11:35 am

I'm going to have to use other examples here, because this is an OG question and I can't discuss it directly.

Vineet:
A rise in robberies suggests that the gangs might not be as weak as have been previously thought by some politicians.

"have been" is plural. (he has been, they have been) So some plural noun has to go with it. This is a convoluted sentence structure - it's basically saying "have been thought." An idea is singular - you'd have to say "as has been thought..."

(Note: I'm not addressing the tense issue here - though there is a tense problem here as well, obviously. I'm only addressing the sub-verb issue.)

In your later post, vineet, you seem to be trying to make the analysts the subject. You can say "the analysts thought," which is active voice - the subject is actually undertaking the action of the verb. But this sentence is in passive voice: something (has or have) been thought BY the analysts. In a passive construction, the subject is NOT doing the action. Rather, the subject is having the action performed on it. The analysts thought something ABOUT an idea / the economy, so that becomes the subject in a passive construction.

iamcste:
1. No. I'm going to use my alternate example sentence above to mimic what you wrote: "the gangs might not be as weak as previously thought by some politicians." The prepositional phrase "by some politicians" indicates that the "politicians" can't be the subject of the sentence. Who's doing the thinking? The politicians! Oh, so we have to use passive construction here, because of this prepositional phrase. But, in the example you gave, you only have "thought" as the verb construction. That's active, not passive. You could use that if you were saying "as the politicians thought." But that isn't what it says - you're saying the idea WAS thought BY the politicians. So you'd need to include that "was" in there to make the verb construction passive.

2. Yes, something like that. When the comparison is between what something actually is vs. what someone thought it was, you can indicate the "thought it was" part via tense, without repeating the initial word.

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angela_lovegmat Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
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Sat Jun 23, 2012 10:22 pm
Stacey,I have a problem here.

if there is another choice like "claims suggest that the economy might not be as weak as was previously thought by some analysts" , i still regard it as a wrong choice.

my reason is as follows:

it seems as if the economy was thought by some analysts ,but not the whole idea conveyed before. will this confusion exist?

umeshpatil Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
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Fri Sep 20, 2013 10:27 pm
1. I am analyzing this sentence. Surge in home sales and drop in unemployment are causes of change in economy. Second part of sentence after 'claims suggest that' compares two economies. 1. Current economy, and Economy as thought by analysts. So, To match the parallelism economy should be compared with economy.
Option A compares economy with action(thinking) by analysts.
Option C compares economy with economy. This follows parallelism.

Is my analysis wrong. I tend to choose C over A.

2. As per Stacey's reply C is not wrong because of subject verb disagreement between 'have been' and singular 'economy', but its wrong because of passive construction.

Quote:
In your later post, vineet, you seem to be trying to make the analysts the subject. You can say "the analysts thought," which is active voice - the subject is actually undertaking the action of the verb. But this sentence is in passive voice: something (has or have) been thought BY the analysts. In a passive construction, the subject is NOT doing the action. Rather, the subject is having the action performed on it. The analysts thought something ABOUT an idea / the economy, so that becomes the subject in a passive construction.
Can anyone explain me, why passive construction is incorrect? Examples will help to understand when active voice should be used and when passive.

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Rich.C@EMPOWERgmat.com Elite Legendary Member
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Sat Sep 21, 2013 12:11 am
Hi umeshpatil,

Answer C is incorrect for both the reasons that are stated (the subject "economy" does NOT match the verb "have" and passive voice TENDS to be incorrect).

As a general "style" rule, "active voice" is preferable to "passive voice."

Active Voice: "I taught the class."

Passive Voice: "The class was taught by me."

This is a good rule to keep in mind because the correct answer to most GMAT SCs will be in the active voice. However, in some rare circumstances, passive voice is acceptable. In addition, you should write all of your essays (GMAT and application essays) in the active voice - that style of writing will make you appear more dynamic and interesting. Moreover, if you interview during the admissions process, you should make sure to speak about yourself in the active voice (for the same reasons mentioned above).

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich

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