Yesterday, Manhattan GMAT posted a GMAT question on our blog. Today, they have followed up with the answer:
The average of the three numbers is 44, so they must add up to 132.
We know the median is 42, so the numbers, arranged in order, look like:
x, 42, y
We want the smallest number that the largest number can be, meaning, we want the smallest value of y.
To get the smallest value of y, we need x to be as large as it can be. 42 is the median, which means it’s in the middle, but it does not mean that the largest x can be is 41. x can be 42 as well. If that is the case, then 42 + 42 + y = 132, or y = 48.