Sunday, December 16, 2007

Money Talk—Analysis

A couple of days ago I posted an article about the disturbing trend in our local universities—there are 70% girls against 30% boys in the universities. However, I didn't think that those statistics were any indication of a declining number of clever boys when compared to girls in Malaysia. I went on to carry out a small experiment in an attempt to prove my point.

Well, folks, it is time to analyse those answers and explanations submitted by some visitors to this blog. Unfortunately, I received too few submissions; therefore the sample is simply too small to represent the entire population. However, in my opinion, we can still get a glimpse of the respective lines of thoughts between the males and females.

I received only 8 submissions—4 from the gals and 4 from the guys. Out of the 4 submissions from the gals, 3 chose option (A) 1 truck full of 5-sen coins; and 1 chose option (B) 5 trucks full of 1-sen coins. As for the guys it's the other way round, 3 chose option (B); and only 1 chose option (A). Let's investigate their lines of thoughts.

Let's look at the submissions from the gals first:

"Dear Cornelius,

Ready your blog about boys and girls on money talk. Just to respond to the question, here is my answer.

=Of course i would choose a truck load of 5 cents. It only makes sense to choose that. Since the 5 cents coins are smaller, i can get more coins in a truck

For example:

1 truck can fit 1000pcs 1 cents coins and 1200pcs of 5 cents coins (because 5 cents is smaller)

= 1000 x 5 trucks x 1 cents= 5000 (for 5 trucks of 1 cents)
= 1200 x 5 cents = 6000

Hope to see the results on your blog soon"

An answer which deserves an "A" in our education system, although I don't quite agree to the 20% difference in the number of coins. I don't believe the difference in size between the 1-sen and 5-sen coins is more than 5%, but I might be wrong.

And here are the other answers from the other gals:

"1 truck load of 5sen coins for me. Since they r smaller, I kinda think I’ll get more w the 1 truck of 5 sen than the 5 trucks of 1 sen… anyway like you said, 1 sen is facing out what would I want them for?? Unless… the 1 sen r real metal (copper) and unless I have a furnace where I can melt them down??? And get the metal’s worth… now that’s worth thinking about…Btw… I’m a girl."

And another,

"I choose this option
(A) 1 truck, full of 5-sen coins

This is because, it is more cost effective to transport the same amount of money in 1 truck compared to 5 trucks. Besides that, in storage space wise it is more economical if you look at the warehouse concept, where customers are charged according to the space they take up in the warehouse.

Another thing is, having so many 1 cents and knowing that it will be phase out come April 1 2008. It would be troublesome to bring all these 1 cents to the bank to encash it."

And another,

"B) 5 trucks, full of 1-sen coins
Why? I will sell these 5 truck loads coz copper price is at about USD$6.50/Kg now."

It won't surprise you that the last answer above was submitted by a mathematician; very, very calculative, huh?

Those answers make perfect sense and can pass with flying colours in the university exams. But are they practical in the real world? They all paid a lot of attention to the small differences in the 1-sen and 5-sen coins but they totally forgot to consider the significance of the trucks! Here are the answers from the guys:

"My choice would be 5 trucks full of 1-sen coins.I would have 4 more trucks, and the metal melted from the 1-sen coins is probably worth more than that of the 5-sen coins.

ps: I'm a guy."

And another,

"5 trucks. since it is not mentioned I make my own assumptions that I'll be keeping the 5 trucks too! the contents being the same, the net total is I have have 4 trucks more than the other option."

And another,

"I would choose 5 trucks of 1-sen coins. Since the 1-sen coins will be out of circulation shortly, imagine the trucks load of copper I will have. If I melt them down altogether I will have so much copper that I can sell and get more than I bargain for.Ha Ha...... "

And another,

"Off hand, I would choose the 1 truck load of 5 sen coins

1) You mentioned in your blog that the 1 sen coin is slightly larger than the 5 sen coin. After verifying your claim myself, i noticed one other difference and that is also the reason for my choice

2) the 5 sen coin is also marginally thinner than the 1 sen coin..As such, 5 truck loads of 1 sen coin should not equal 1 truck load of 5 sen coins as the 1 sen coins will take up much more space and thus offer lesser value between the two choice. However, your question does not give a reason for the choice. The automatic assumption is that if it concerns money than the more the better. In value of course.If though, you were asked to choose which choice would offer you more metal in volume..then the choice would be b) 5 truck loads of 1 sen coin would yield more in metal than the 1 truck load of 5 sen coins...

Sex: once in a blue moon."

The last answer above is unclear. On the one hand, he appears to choose option (A); and on the other hand, he appears to choose option (B) too. This is the type of answer one would expect from a politician—never straightforward. And he obviously didn't consider the additional 4 trucks too. But I suppose we can all forgive him. Maybe that is the effect of sexual deprivation, I don't know.

A word about melting money. It is of course illegal to melt money, so don't go collecting coins for the sole purpose of melting them down! However, I am doubtful that one can get more by selling melted coins. Although I haven't researched it, my idea is that the value of the metals used to make our coins must be worth less if sold as metal when compared to the face value of the currency. Otherwise, we wouldn't have coins in circulation since a long time ago! But I may be wrong. It would be good if anyone with an indepth knowledge in this can share a bit with us all.

As I said earlier, 8 submissions can hardly qualify to give an accurate picture of the entire population. To those who participated in this "experiment", thank you for being good sports. I hope you have had fun.

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