Critical Reasoning Question 14-Packaging Company

World War II had a profound effect on the growth of nascent businesses.  The Acme Packaging Company netted only $10,000 in the year before the war.  By 1948 it was earning almost 10 times that figure.

The argument above depends upon which of the following assumptions?

A.  Acme’s growth rate is representative of other nascent businesses.

B.  An annual profit of $10,000 is not especially high.

C.  Wars inevitably stimulate a nation’s economy.

D.  Rapid growth for nascent businesses is especially desirable.

E.  Acme is not characterized by responsible, far-sighted managers.

Think you know the answer?

The correct answer is A.

The author uses the single case of Acme to conclude that the war profoundly affected “nascent businesses.”  This assumes that Acme’s growth rate is typical, or representative, of such businesses (A); otherwise, why hold it up as an example?

As for (B), the author needn’t assume that $10,000 isn’t much of a profit.  Maybe he thinks it started out high and got even higher.  (C), which brings up other wars, is beyond the scope-the argument concerns World War II, period.  (D)’s tricky, but it’s not assumed.  Notice that the author claims only that World War II had a profound, not salutary, effect on nascent businesses, so we don’t know just how he feels about rapid growth rates.  As for (E), the author needn’t assume Acme’s managers had nothing to do with the company’s success, just that the was also had an effect-and a marked one.

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