Please look at the test question below.
(Examinees are asked to choose the best expression for the blank from among the four alternatives.)
Due to the economic crisis, ................. than ten banks were forced to close down.
1. not lower
2. not larger
3. no less
4. no fewer
I know neither #1 nor #2 works.
However, I'm not sure about #3 and #4.
Which is better, #3 or #4? (Both of them sound OK to me. )
Last edited by tzfujimino; 03-Oct-2014 at 18:55. Reason: added 'not'
The rule is to use "fewer" for countable items and "less" for uncountable. Ten banks, so "fewer."
Many don't abide by this rule in real life (e.g. the "ten items or less" lane in the grocery store), but this is surely what this question is about.
Fewer calories. Less fat.