Quantitative Reasoning Applied to Modern Advertising

By Joseph Ganem.

Published by The International Journal of Science in Society

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Quantitative reasoning methods that scientists routinely employ can expose deceptive advertising practices. The presentation will analyze common offers for mortgages, and auto loans to show how marketers use numbers to mislead consumers. Modern advertising methods use deceptive mathematical statements combined with behavioral finance models to re-frame financial losses for consumers as financial gains. The deceptive frames intentionally subvert normal operation of the market by inducing consumers to act contrary to their financial interests. Consumers from all economic backgrounds can benefit by learning some basic tools from quantitative analysis. Science can benefit society by teaching how quantitative reasoning can improve daily financial decision-making.

Keywords: Deceptive Advertising, Quantitative Reasoning, Mortgages, Loans, Behavioral Finance, Financial Math, Consumers

The International Journal of Science in Society, Volume 1, Issue 2, pp.87-96. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.653MB).

Prof. Joseph Ganem

Professor of Physics, Department of Physics, Loyola University Maryland, Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Joseph Ganem is author of the award-winning book: The Two Headed Quarter: How to See Through Deceptive Numbers and Save Money on Everything You Buy. He regularly writes and talks about quantitative reasoning applied to consumer issues. He received a B. S. from the University of Rochester, M. S. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Ph.D. from Washington University in St. Louis. All his degrees are in physics. He did postdoctoral work at the University of Georgia in Athens and the U. S. Naval Research Laboratory in Washington DC before joining the Loyola College faculty in 1994. He teaches undergraduate physics courses at all levels and conducts research on the optical properties of solid-state laser materials.