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Such a Deal!

Math brain teasers require computations to solve.


Puzzle ID:#360
Fun:*** (2.32)
Difficulty:** (1.99)
Submitted By:Phyllis*****!
Corrected By:MarcM1098




A man received an ad in the mail that promised to double his money. For every dollar he sent in, the ad guaranteed to return double his money minus a $24 service charge. He thought that was a pretty good deal, so he sent in his money. In the return mail he received double his money less the $24 service charge. He returned the money he had made and again it was doubled less the service charge. But, when he sent in the money a third time, he was charged the $24 service fee, but received no money back. How much money did the man lose?

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He lost $21. Work backwards. If his last payment was doubled, less $24, it must have been $12. Payment two must have been $18, and payment one $21.

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(user deleted)
Nov 21, 2001

I think this is wrong because of bad wording

you say He returned the money he had made which I would say implied profit.

In this case he send 42$ first getting 60$ back then 18$ (keeping his original 42$) then 12$ loosing nothing.
Apr 25, 2002

Well I thought it was good!
Nice one
Jul 13, 2004

Was the IQ of that man more than the number of dollars he lost (vhich is more than 21, because there was the postage, unless the generous money-doublers provided a postage paid envelope)?
Mar 20, 2005

Heck just send in $1 000 000!

Jan 11, 2006

Actually, if you count the total money lost, it is more that $21. Sure, he started with $21, but that's not what he lost, total:

1) Started with $21
2) Received $42
3) Loss #1: $24
4) Had $18 to reinvest
5) Received $36
6) Loss #2: $24
7) Had $12 to reinvest
Received $24
9) Loss #3: $24
Ended with zero.

So, ultimately, the man lost 3x$24, or $72, not just $21.

Because the ad actually made good on it's promise to return double the money, for a little while, at least, the man was ahead, and so was able to lose more than he invested.

Nice teaser, just a little off on the question. The question should have been "How much did the man start with?" or "How much did the man invest..."

Liked it anyway!
Mar 10, 2006

There was nothing wrong with the wording.....because the last instance said he received you know exactly what was sent in...and as the answer it backwards...

he could have made money off this if he had started with a larger amount.....
Apr 23, 2006

It is too obvious that any investments less than $24 lose ground. Too off the mark to entertain.
Jun 19, 2006

you say He returned the money he had made which I would say implied profit.

How can he return money he doesn't have? The question states that money returned to him is the net, not the gross.

Still, this guy is dumb to send in $12 knowing he won't get anything back.
Jul 12, 2006

The wording makes it confusing... then again... maybe it's just me
Sep 04, 2006

I agree with many here that the question was poorly worded. I appreciate what the teaser attempted to do though. Good effort.
Jul 28, 2009

The man actually could have began with any amount as long as it is no less than $18.01 and no more than $21.00

If he began with $18.01 then he would receive $12.02 back. Then when he sent that in he would get $0.04 back Then he sends that in and receives nothing back.

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