ZS-Associates Sample Verbal Questions

DIRECTIONS for question 1-5: Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions given below it.Certain words have been printed in bold to help you locate them while answering some of the questions.
Financial Inclusion (Fl) is an emerging priority for banks that have nowhere else to go to achieve business growth. The viability of Fl business is under question, because while banks and their delivery partners continue to make investments, they haven't seen commensurate returns. In markets like India, most programs are focused on customer on-boarding, an expensive process which people often find difficult to afford, involving issuance of smart cards to the customers. However, large scale customer acquisition hasn't translated into large scale business, with many accounts lying dormant and therefore yielding no return on the bank's investment. For the same reason, Business Correspondent Agents who constitute the primary channel for financial inclusion are unable to pursue their activity as a full-time job. One major reason for this state of events is that the customer on-boarding process is often delayed after the submission of documents (required to validate the details of the concerned applicant) by the applicant and might take as long as two weeks. By this time the initial enthusiasm of applicants fades away. Moreover, the delivery partners don't have the knowledge and skill to propose anything other than the most basic financial products to the customer and hence do not serve their banks' goal of expanding the offering in unbanked markets.
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Contrary to popular perception, the inclusion segment is not a singular impoverished, undifferentiated mass and it is important to navigate its diversity to identify the right target customers for various programs. Rural markets do have their share of rich people who do not use banking services simply because they are inconvenient to access or have low perceived value. At the same time, urban markets, despite a high branch density, have multitude of low wage earners outside the financial net. Moreover, the branch timings of banks rarely coincide with the off-work hours of the labour class.
Creating affordability is crucial in tapping the unbanked market. No doubt pricing is a tool, but banks also need to be innovative in right- sizing their proposition to convince customers that they can derive big value even from small amounts. One way of doing this is to show the target audience that a bank account is actually a lifestyle enabler, a convenient and safe means to send money to family or make a variety of purchases. Once banks succeed in hooking customers with this value proposition they must sustain their interest by introducing a simple and intuitive user application, ubiquitous access over mobile and other touch points, and adopting a banking mechanism which is not only secure but also reassuring to the customer. Technology is the most important element of financial inclusion strategy and an enabler of all others. The choice of technology is therefore a crucial decision, which could make or mar the agenda. Of the various selection criteria, cost is perhaps the most important. This certainly does not mean buying the cheapest package, but rather choosing that solution which by scaling transactions to huge volumes reduces per unit operating cost. An optimal mix of these strategies would no doubt offer an innovative means of expansion in the unbanked market.
  1. Which of the following facts is true as per the passage?
    1. People from rural areas have high perceived value of banking services
    2. Cost is not a valid criterion for technological package selection for financial inclusion initiatives
    3. The inclusion segment is a singular impoverished, undifferentiated mass
    4. The branch timings of banks generally do not coincide with the off-work hours of the labour class in urban markets
    5. All the given statements are true
    Answer: Option D.
    The correct answer to this question is option 4.It is stated in the last line of the second paragraph. The passage has to be read very carefully in order to answer such questions. The first option is incorrect as per the lines (Rural markets do have………………..have low perceived value) mentioned in the second paragraph. The second statement can be verified after going through the lines (Of the various criteria…………….most important) stated in the last paragraph. After reading the first line of second paragraph we can conclude that the third statement is incorrect.
  2. According to the passage, for which of the following reasons do the delivery partners fail to serve their bank's goal to expand in the unbanked markets?
    They do not have adequate client base to sell their financial products
    They do not have adequate knowledge and skills to explain anything beyond basic financial products to the customers
    They do not have the skills to operate advanced technological aids that are a prerequisite to tap the unbanked market
    1. Only B
    2. Only C
    3. All A, B & C
    4. Only A
    5. Both B & C
    Answer: Option A.
    The last line of the first paragraph (Moreover, the delivery partners……………unbanked markets) gives us the answer to this question.
  3. According to the passage, for which of the following reasons is the viability of financial inclusion under question?
    1. The banks always prefer the cheapest package (to cut cost) while making a choice of technology to be used
    2. The Business Correspondent Agents are highly demotivated to pursue their activity as a full-time job
    3. The investments made by banks and its delivery partners are not yielding equal amount of returns
    4. The banks do not have adequate number of delivery partners required to tap the unbanked market
    5. The banks do not have adequate manpower to explore the diversity of the unbanked market and thereby identify the right target customers for various programs
    Answer: Option C.
    The answer to this question is option C. It is clearly stated in the second line of the first paragraph (The viability...commensurate returns.)
  4. In the passage, the author has specified which of the following characteristics of the customer on-boarding process?
    1. It involves collection of documents from the applicants in order to validate their details
    2. It involves issuance of smart cards to the customers
    3. It suffers from latency as it takes a long time after submission of documents by the customer
    4. It is an expensive process which people find difficult to afford
    5. All of the given characteristics have been specified
    Answer: Option C.
    It is stated in the line (One major reason……….as two weeks) of the first paragraph.
  5. What did the author try to highlight in the passage?
    1. The ailing condition of financial inclusion business at present
    2. Strategies that may help bank to expand in the unbanked market
    3. Role of government in modifying the existing financial inclusion policies
    4. None of These
    Answer: Option A and B.
    The author sheds light on the troubled condition of financial inclusion business. Moreover, he suggests some remedial measures to help the banks to expand their operations. So both the options (A) and (B) are correct.
    DIRECTIONS for the question 6-8: Read each sentence to find out whether there is any grammatical mistake/ error in it. The error if any, will be in one part of the sentence. Mark the number of that part with error as your answer. If there is 'No error', mark (5)
  6. There cannot be any situation where (1)/ somebody makes money in an asset (2)/ located in India and does not pay tax (3)/ either to India or to the country of his origin(4)/ No error(5)
    1. 1
    2. 2
    3. 3
    4. 4
    5. 5
    Answer: Option A.
    The usage of the word ‘any’ is incorrect in this part of the sentence. The correct article would be ‘a’ situation where………..
  7. India has entered a downward spiral(1) / where the organised, productive(2) / and law abide sectors are subject to(3) / savage amounts of multiple taxes(4)/ No error(5)
    1. 1
    2. 2
    3. 3
    4. 4
    5. 5
    Answer: Option C.
    The corrected part should be ‘law abiding sectors are subject to…………….’ as noun form of the word is required instead of its verb form.
  8. 8. The bank may have followed(1) / an aggressive monetary tightening policy(2)/ but its stated aim of (3)/ curbing inflation have not been achieved(4)/ No error(5)
    1. 1
    2. 2
    3. 3
    4. 4
    5. 5
    Answer: Option D.
    The corrected part should be ‘curbing inflation has not been achieved.’ as the verb is to be used for the subject 'aim' , which is singular. therefore 'has' in place of 'have'.
    DIRECTIONS for the question 9-10:Each question below has two blanks, each blank indicating that something has been omitted. Choose the set of words for each blank that best fits the meaning of the sentence as a whole.
  9. When you want to digitalize a city_____ with millions, you don't bet__________ the odds.
    1. proceeding, into
    2. teeming, against
    3. undergoing, adhere
    4. dangling, for
    5. falling, above
    Answer: Option B.
    The word ‘teeming’ means abounding or swarming with something, as with people. This pair completes the meaning of the sentence.
  10. The numbers______ by the legitimate online music service providers indicate that a growing number of users are______ to buy music.
    1. morphed, ignoring
    2. labelled, thriving
    3. figured, fanatic
    4. painted, interested
    5. touted, willing.
    Answer: Option E.
    The word ‘touted’ means to proclaim and 'people will be 'willing' to buy music.
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