SAT Math Multiple Choice Question 494: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 494

14. Each month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics conducts a survey called the Current Population Survey (CPS) to measure unemployment in the United States. Across the country, about 60,000 households are included in the survey sample. These households are grouped by geographic region. A summary of the January 2014 survey results for male respondents in one geographic region is shown in the table below.

Employed Unemployed Not in the Labor Force Total
16 to 19 8 5 10 23
20 to 24 26 7 23 56
25 to 34 142 11 28 157
35 to 44 144 8 32 164
45 to 54 66 6 26 98
Over 54 65 7 36 152
Total 451 44 155 650

According to the data in the table, for which age group did the smallest percentage of men report that they were unemployed in January 2014?

  • A. 20 to 24 years
  • B. 35 to 44 years
  • C. 45 to 54 years
  • D. Over 54 years

Correct Answer: D

Explanation:

D

Difficulty: Easy

Category: Problem Solving and Data Analysis / Statistics and Probability

Strategic Advice: You do not need to use all of the information presented in the table to find the answer. Read the question carefully to make sure you use only what you need.

Getting to the Answer: To calculate the percentage of men in each age group who reported being unemployed in January 2014, divide the number in that age group who were unemployed by the total number in that age group. There are six age groups but only four answer choices, so don't waste time on the age groups that aren't represented. Choice (D) is correct because 7 ÷ 152 ≈ 0.046 = 4.6%, which is a lower percentage than that for any other age group (20 to 24 = 12.5%; 35 to 44 = 4.9%; 45 to 54 = 6.1%).

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