Here is a sentence:
"In the United States between 1850 and 1880, the number of farmers continued to increase, but at a rate lower than that of the general population."
Now, from this, I infer that the rate of increase in the number of farmers during the 30 years was not at par or higher than the rate at which the whole population increased.
Eg. The population may have increased by 3% but the no. of farmers increased by 1%. Correct?
As an hypothetical example, if the population was 100 persons with 10 farmers, now it is 103 with 1 farmer (total 11). Right?
My doubt is, The place where I read this text had a related question asking what contradicts the statement.. and the answer read:
"The proportion of farmers in the general population increased from 68 percent in 1850 to 72 percent in 1880."!
For the reason that members are not interpreting the question as it deems to be, here's some additional info:
First of, note that the doubt is NOT related to the 'math' or values involved in the example. The doubt is about the fact that where I read the original statement, had an accompanied question asking that which of the statements 'contradict' the original statement.
Hence, the doubt that I had is that how the second statement that mentions that there 'was' an increase in the proportion of farmers, contradict the original statement.
Hope I make my point clear now and yes, this question IS related to ENGLISH and not MATHS.
Any further doubts, kindly consider clarifying in the comments.