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To think that this sum is super simple

(531 Posts)
PeerieBreeks Sun 11-Feb-18 08:26:38

and can't understand how so many people on Facebook have it so completely wrong (and can justify it to themselves).

Without adding your reasoning, tell me what you think the answer is.

DadDadDad Sun 11-Feb-18 08:28:51


Dermymc Sun 11-Feb-18 08:29:02


DadDadDad Sun 11-Feb-18 08:29:14

(that's profit)

MadameJosephine Sun 11-Feb-18 08:30:27

He’s up $20

Toughtips Sun 11-Feb-18 08:30:41

He made £20 in total by selling the horse?

whyismykid Sun 11-Feb-18 08:30:50

He is $10 up at the end

Urubu Sun 11-Feb-18 08:30:53

He earned £20

Note3 Sun 11-Feb-18 08:31:46

I think he made 10 but my maths is shocking

Pengggwn Sun 11-Feb-18 08:32:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Emabrmsca Sun 11-Feb-18 08:32:20

He made $10?

Eolian Sun 11-Feb-18 08:33:19

£20 up

XmasInTintagel Sun 11-Feb-18 08:33:25

$20 up.
That always seems to be how these things go on Facebook though :-)

Whodofthunkit Sun 11-Feb-18 08:33:54

He's up £10

Ginandplatonic Sun 11-Feb-18 08:34:46

He made $20

PeerieBreeks Sun 11-Feb-18 08:34:55

Haha Xmas, that's true!

Cathy1987 Sun 11-Feb-18 08:35:19

I think he made $30.

Ifailed Sun 11-Feb-18 08:35:24


PukousMucous Sun 11-Feb-18 08:35:44

$30 profit

DadDadDad Sun 11-Feb-18 08:35:49

Financially, it's the same as:

Man buys a horse for $60, then sells it for $70. Next, he buys a cow for $80 and sells it for $90.

Does that change anyone's answer?

Ginandplatonic Sun 11-Feb-18 08:35:59

What do you think the answer is OP?

Windmyonlyfriend Sun 11-Feb-18 08:36:09

$10 profit in the end...isn’t it?

zen1 Sun 11-Feb-18 08:36:29

He made $10?

BertrandRussell Sun 11-Feb-18 08:36:39

Up 30 surely?

gabsdot Sun 11-Feb-18 08:36:41

He made $20. $10 profit on each transaction. It you look at each transaction separately it makes more sense.

Pickleypickles Sun 11-Feb-18 08:36:44

He earned £10

BookHelpPlease Sun 11-Feb-18 08:36:51

£20- easy peasy

MissionItsPossible Sun 11-Feb-18 08:37:30

Made 20 but 10 profit? My maths is shockingly bad.

Beckyb1 Sun 11-Feb-18 08:37:39

10 up

BookHelpPlease Sun 11-Feb-18 08:37:41

he spent 60+80 = 140.
He made 70+90 =160
difference is =20

bakingaddict Sun 11-Feb-18 08:38:02

The first transaction he made $10, then he was down $10 when he bought back at a loss, then he sold again for $10 profit which wiped out the $10 loss so all in all he broke even in my book

MysweetAudrina Sun 11-Feb-18 08:38:03

Has to be 20.

ManagedTeaCups Sun 11-Feb-18 08:38:29

I though 10 profit at the end but not sure nlw

UnimaginativeNameChange1 Sun 11-Feb-18 08:38:51

He spends a total of $140 and 'earns' a total of $160. $20 difference.

DadDadDad Sun 11-Feb-18 08:39:23

Ifailed and BookHelpPlease have encapsulated it perfectly. It's definitely $20.

DrRanjsRightEyebrow Sun 11-Feb-18 08:39:31

Up 20

BookHelpPlease Sun 11-Feb-18 08:39:40

Ladies the first transaction is separate from the first. He makes 10 on each transaction. So he makes 20 in total.

Emabrmsca Sun 11-Feb-18 08:39:59

Just done it on a calculator and will change my answer to say he's up $20

My maths is awful!!

PeerieBreeks Sun 11-Feb-18 08:40:11

I know it's $20. But there are people saying anything from break even to $40 profit.

Some of the ones that are wrong are telling the period that are right that they shouldn't run a business of that's how they calculate profit! It's highly amusing.

Cathy1987 Sun 11-Feb-18 08:40:20

He paid $60 for the horse, and sold it at the end for $90. $30 profit. I think confused

BookHelpPlease Sun 11-Feb-18 08:40:45

People on Facebook do tend to be spanners though!

Windmyonlyfriend Sun 11-Feb-18 08:41:16

Ha! I’ve pondered it further and I’m changing my answer to $20.

Though I can see why these are confusing!

PeerieBreeks Sun 11-Feb-18 08:41:24


Bookaboo Sun 11-Feb-18 08:42:57

He's only made $10

Pompom42 Sun 11-Feb-18 08:43:30

Up $20?

CecilyP Sun 11-Feb-18 08:44:29

Would it hel those who got it wrong to think of it as 2 different horses?

Believeitornot Sun 11-Feb-18 08:44:34


If you imagine you had $200 in your hand while making these transactions, how much would you end up with afterwards? (I chose $200 at random, could be anything as long as you’ve got enough to buy the most expensive horse).

That’s your profit.

Pengggwn Sun 11-Feb-18 08:45:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

NotSoSprightly Sun 11-Feb-18 08:46:18

I came out at he broke even...

Danglingmod Sun 11-Feb-18 08:47:04

Of course it's 20.

CuriousaboutSamphire Sun 11-Feb-18 08:47:51

Yes, separate transactions. He made a $10 profit on each.

Or he spent 60 + 80 = $140
But sold for 70 + 90 = $160

Or any other variation you may prefer.

PeerieBreeks Sun 11-Feb-18 08:47:58

@Pengggwn I don't think not being great at maths is highly amusing.

I think people that are telling others not to run a business as they can't work out profit correctly when they are entirely wrong themselves is highly amusing.

People that aren't good at maths know it, and wouldn't be so bold as to make that kind of comment.

CuriousaboutSamphire Sun 11-Feb-18 08:48:45

Sorry, that included my reasoning. But these things annoy/amuse me confused

Pengggwn Sun 11-Feb-18 08:49:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BeyondThePage Sun 11-Feb-18 08:50:19

if you take it from him having $60... he sells for $70 - so he made $10

he then buys the same thing for $80 so someone else made $10

Then sells it for $90 so made another $10.

He made $20, someone else made $10.

(none of it will be profit since keeping and transporting a horse costs a damn lot more than $20!)

FluffyWuffy100 Sun 11-Feb-18 08:51:05

I can see why people are interpreting it in different ways for answers $10 $20 and $30.

I belive the correct answer is:
Revenue (70 + 90) = 160
Cost of sales -(60 + 80) = -140
Gross profit = 20

However I can see why people think it’s $30 (90-60) as they think you take the last sales price and the first purchase price.

Also can see 10 because you think you make 10 on the first transaction, then spend 10 to get the horse then make 10 again.

Can’t see 40 or break even.

BMW6 Sun 11-Feb-18 08:51:12

$20 profit.

JackmanAdmirer Sun 11-Feb-18 08:51:30

$20 profit

PeerieBreeks Sun 11-Feb-18 08:52:42

And to be fair, the people that are getting it wrong seem to be either over-complicating it and doing something with a perceived $10 loss in the middle, or over-simplifying it saying he started with 60, now he has 90. And I can understand how either could easily happen and when you have that concept in your head its hard to see past it.

megletthesecond Sun 11-Feb-18 08:53:34


CecilyP Sun 11-Feb-18 08:53:37

You’re right; some people aren’t great at maths, but this is very basic arithmetic, or simple logic. Can those who came out as break even, $10 or $30 explain how they got there?

Bookaboo Sun 11-Feb-18 08:54:28

I don't think it helps to look at it as 2 separate transactions because it's not.

The way I'm looking at it it is how much money did he make from his initial investment in this one horse?
I still think that is only $10.

BadLad Sun 11-Feb-18 08:55:34

He made 20 profit.

Twice he bought something and then sold it for then more than he paid.

ManagedTeaCups Sun 11-Feb-18 08:55:50

Like I said I’m not good at maths he paid out 80 for the horse then got 90 back so the final difference was 10 that’s how I got 10 profit overall

Drinaballerina Sun 11-Feb-18 08:56:17

This encapsulates the problem with the financial system. You can get the numbers to say all sorts depending on what you want them to - I say this as an accountant!

Bookaboo Sun 11-Feb-18 08:57:19

The question asks in the end, so surely it's net profit, not gross profit?

IShouldGoToBed Sun 11-Feb-18 08:58:01

$10 - he gained

BadLad Sun 11-Feb-18 08:59:08

Like I said I’m not good at maths he paid out 80 for the horse then got 90 back so the final difference was 10 that’s how I got 10 profit overall

Why are you ignoring the first time he bought and sold the horse?

PeerieBreeks Sun 11-Feb-18 08:59:47

The $40 I sat was someone saying 90-60 =40.

The break even people generally say

He spent 60, got back 70 which was 10 profit plus his 60. He then spends 80 which is the 70 plus 10, then he gets 90 which gives him his 70 plus the two extra 10's that he already spent.

Which is super complicated and doesn't make sense...

ManagedTeaCups Sun 11-Feb-18 09:00:21

I thought the wording of the question wanted the final profit the final amount ‘up’

BookHelpPlease Sun 11-Feb-18 09:01:46

This isn't even maths, it's a really basic logic question. I am shocked at the amount of people confused by it.

He spent 60 + 80 = 140
he earns 70 + 90= 160

He makes 20 in profit.

They are separate transactions. Once he's sold the horse, he could be buying anything the second time.

Imagine he bought a horse for 60, sold it for 70 makes £10.
Then buys a cow for 80, sold it for 90, makes another £10.

CecilyP Sun 11-Feb-18 09:01:46

I don't think it helps to look at it as 2 separate transactions because it's not

Yes it is!

ThumbWitchesAbroad Sun 11-Feb-18 09:02:23

It is easy, yes.
$20 profit.

To avoid confusion, he spends out $140 in total, and gets back $160 in total.

UnmitigatedBollocks Sun 11-Feb-18 09:02:24

I’m really thick at maths but even I got it.

goose1964 Sun 11-Feb-18 09:03:32

broke even made 2 £10 profits and 2 £10 losses

IShouldGoToBed Sun 11-Feb-18 09:04:09

Sorry - that means he was $20 up by the end!! ( well done him - but buying and sellling horses is quite a complex and labour intensive way to make $20! Unless it's all online!!)

PeerieBreeks Sun 11-Feb-18 09:04:41

Bookaboo, the net and gross profit in this case are the same, as there are no other costs.

Bookaboo it is two separate transactions, which is why it is helpful to view them as such.

The people that are getting it wrong are the people that are doing something funny in the middle with a perceived loss.

Instead of doing something with a perceived loss try adding and subtracting the total amounts paid /received to get the profit figure.

CuriousaboutSamphire Sun 11-Feb-18 09:05:55

Oooh! Interesting perspective:

You only have $60 dollars to your name. Over weekend you buy and sell a horse and on Monday morning you have $90... so your profit is $30.

But, as I tried to explain to the friend who is here pondering this..... you only had $60, then $70. But the second purchase was $80, so you had to borrow $10 from me and pay me back...

Not sure our morning is going as we planned grin

CecilyP Sun 11-Feb-18 09:06:04

The question asks in the end, so surely it's net profit, not gross profit?

No, net profit would take into account his expenses and, as someone said unthread, transporting the horses would normally incur a loss.

TheIrregularChoice Sun 11-Feb-18 09:07:05

The farmer is £20 better off at the end than he was at the start. No matter how I look at it, I can’t get to any other answer.
Have I missed something, like misread a word, and the answer is actually five magic beans or a pig?

Paleblue Sun 11-Feb-18 09:07:30

20 profit

APerfectSky Sun 11-Feb-18 09:08:02

I also got 10 (maths is not my strong point either!) because he paid out 60, got back 70, so up 10. Then he paid out 80, so paid the 70 he now has, plus another 10 from his money, so he's 10 down. Then he gets back 90, which is his 70 from the last transaction, then one of the extra 10s goes to paying off the extra 10 he needed from the second transaction, which leaves 10.

I think confused I've now massively confused myself...

IShouldGoToBed Sun 11-Feb-18 09:09:32

Curious - he didn't have only $60 tobhis name to begin with - unless a team some point he went $10 into his overdraft!! (Sounds like me)!

DadDadDad Sun 11-Feb-18 09:09:49

Illustration using Believeitornot's suggestion. (Back on page 2 - there have been quite a few posts while I was creating this!).

He starts the day with (an arbitrary) $200 in his pocket and will finish after all the transactions with $220. So $20 profit.

SweetIcedTea Sun 11-Feb-18 09:10:53

When did everything become super?

Sofabitch Sun 11-Feb-18 09:11:07

Buys for $60 ($0-$60) has -$60
Sells for $70 (-60+70) has +$10
Buys for $80 (10-80) has -$70
Sells for $90 (-70+90) has $20

XmasInTintagel Sun 11-Feb-18 09:12:01

I always find, when people say something is really simple, that those people don't all agree on the same answer, but that doesn't seem to affect their view that its simple and they're right!

I didn't find it totally obvious what the answer was, and took a minute to work it out - as if I had an account with $100 to start with, then did the 4 transactions in turn.

I was not super fast, but I am really confident I know what the answer is. $20 profit.

You can get the numbers to say all sorts depending on what you want them to

Not so - it really doesn't depend how you look at it with numbers - they are consistent and logical!

LS83 Sun 11-Feb-18 09:12:23

Yanbu but I'm not sure why you care so much that some people are getting it wrong. It's Facebook.

splendide Sun 11-Feb-18 09:15:45

I’m fairly innumerate but found this easy. It’s not at all a maths problem
(assuming you can add and subtract simple numbers), it’s a reading comprehension/ logic problem.

It’s ok to be bad at those things too.

bakingaddict Sun 11-Feb-18 09:15:47

It's too ambiguous as a statement though isn't it. You can look at it a number of ways. You can either say he made $20 profit by taking the transactions as independent variables or by looking at in as cumulative profit in the context of all the transactions.

brizzledrizzle Sun 11-Feb-18 09:17:41

Broke even ?

blackberryfairy Sun 11-Feb-18 09:18:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

XmasInTintagel Sun 11-Feb-18 09:18:53

You can look at it a number of ways. You can either say he made $20 profit by taking the transactions as independent variables or by looking at in as cumulative profit in the context of all the transactions.

But the correct answer will be the same either way, so it doesn't matter which way you look at it surely?

Danglingmod Sun 11-Feb-18 09:19:09

Yeah, I agree. You don't get this wrong by being weak at maths (the maths involved is very, very basic). You get it wrong by being weak at comprehension and/or logic skills.

bruffin Sun 11-Feb-18 09:20:40

Its 30
He started off with 60 and ended up with 90

PeerieBreeks Sun 11-Feb-18 09:20:50

Haha, love the 'backlash'.

@SweetIcedTea in not sure that everything has become super. I'll watch the news and get back to you.

@LS83 I do care. Deeply. It saddens me to the very core that people are calling other people out when they in fact have the wrong answer themselves. It's traumatising. I'm not sure how I'm going to get through the day.


Pengggwn Sun 11-Feb-18 09:21:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BitOutOfPractice Sun 11-Feb-18 09:21:34

Well, we don't know his actual profit because the horse cost him to feed.
Then there's deperciation of the asset... grin

BadLad Sun 11-Feb-18 09:21:36

I've got maths A-level and I think there's an argument for saying that he made either 10 or 20. It depends on whether you see it as 1 or 2 transactions. Because if it's one transaction, he lost 10 by buying it back for 80 when he'd sold for 70.

It doesn't matter how many transactions you see it as. When all the transactions are over and done with, the bloke is 20 better off than he was at the start.

BitOutOfPractice Sun 11-Feb-18 09:22:21

Depreciation obv

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