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Argument EvaluationSituationMost of the employees of the Haglut Corporation work in themanufacturing division, where employees average 14 hours permonth in overtime. The average amount of overtime per month foremployees at Haglut does not fluctuate much from month tomonth.ReasoningWhat is the argument’s greatest weakness?The argument’sconclusion is that almost certainly each month most of theemployees of Haglut work at least some overtime. Answer choice(D) identifies the argument’s greatest weakness because it pointsout how the conclusion of the argument could be false even if all ofthe supporting information were true. For example, it could be thatless than half of the employees work any overtime at all, but thosethat do work overtime work much more than 14 hours per month.A The argument leaves open the possibility that in some divisions of thecorporation, the average monthly overtime of its employees is quitedifferent from 14 hours, even if (as the argument states) that average doesnot change much from month to month.B The argument does not assume that there is a monthly amount ofovertime worked by each employee of the manufacturing divisionequivalent to the company-wide average monthly overtime per employee.C This does not identify a weakness that can be detected in the argument.Since the claims mentioned here are not specified, the passage provides noevidence that clearly indicates that this type of confusion is playing a role inthe argument.D Correct.The argument ignores the possibility that most of theemployees of Haglut work no overtime at all in a particular month—which isquite consistent with the argument’s assertion that the average number ofmonthly overtime hours per employee within the manufacturing division is14.E The possibility described by this is not overlooked by the argument,because this possibility is consistent with the conclusion. It could easily bethat most employees of the corporation work some overtime each month—as the conclusion envisions—but that there are always some employees whodo not work any overtime.The correct answer is D.
89. In the past the country of Malvernia has relied heavily on imported oil. Malverniarecently implemented a program to convert heating systems from oil to naturalgas. Malvernia currently produces more natural gas each year than it uses, and oilproduction in Malvernian oil fields is increasing at a steady pace. If these trends infuel production and usage continue, therefore, Malvernian reliance on foreignsources for fuel is likely to decline soon.Which of the following would it be most useful to establish in evaluating theargument?(A) When, if ever, will production of oil in Malvernia outstrip production ofnatural gas?