1998 AHSME Problems/Problem 2

Problem 2

Letters $A,B,C,$ and $D$ represent four different digits selected from $0,1,2,\ldots ,9.$ If $(A+B)/(C+D)$ is an integer that is as large as possible, what is the value of $A+B$?

$\mathrm{(A) \  }13 \qquad \mathrm{(B) \  }14 \qquad \mathrm{(C) \  } 15\qquad \mathrm{(D) \  }16 \qquad \mathrm{(E) \  } 17$

Solution

If we want $\frac{A+B}{C+D}$ to be as large as possible, we want to try to maximize the numerator $A+B$ and minimize the denominator $C+D$. Picking $A=9$ and $B=8$ will maximize the numerator, and picking $C=0$ and $D=1$ will minimize the denominator.

Checking to make sure the fraction is an integer, $\frac{A+B}{C+D} = \frac{17}{1} = 17$, and so the values are correct, and $A+B = 17$, giving the answer $\boxed{E}$.

See also

1998 AHSME (ProblemsAnswer KeyResources)
Preceded by
Problem 1
Followed by
Problem 3
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