Scott Woodbury-Stewart

GMAT OFFICIAL GUIDE PS – The sum of prime numbers that are greater than 60…

The sum of prime numbers that are greater than 60…


A prime number is a number that has only two factors: 1 and itself. Therefore, a prime number is divisible by two numbers only.

Let’s list the numbers from 61 to 69.

61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69

Immediately we can eliminate the EVEN NUMBERS because they are divisible by 2 and thus are not prime.

We are now left with: 61, 63, 65, 67, 69

We can next eliminate 65 because 65 is a multiple of 5.

We are now left with 61, 63, 67, 69.

To eliminate any remaining values, we would look at those that are multiples of 3. If you don’t know an easy way to do this, just start with a number that is an obvious multiple of 3, such as 60, and then keep adding 3.

We see that 60, 63, 66, 69 are all multiples of 3 and therefore are not prime.

Thus, we can eliminate 63 and 69 from the list because they are not prime.

Finally, we are left with 61 and 67, and we must determine whether they are divisible by 7. They are not, and therefore they must be both prime. Thus, the sum of 61 and 67 is 128.

Answer: B

Note: Here is a useful rule: If a two-digit number is a prime, it can’t be divisible by any of the single-digit primes. That is, it can’t be divisible by 2, 3, 5 and 7. In other words, if you have a two-digit number that is not divisible by 2, 3, 5 and 7, it must be a prime. If you have trouble seeing that 61 and 67 are prime, I would suggest that you review your multiplication tables. Doing so will allow you to quickly see that 61 and 67 are not multiples of a given single-digit number, such as 7.