Multiplying and dividing positive and negative numbers

The rule for multiplying and dividing is very similar to the rule for adding and subtracting.

  • When the signs are different the answer is negative.
  • When the signs are the same the answer is positive.
Multiplying and dividing negative and positive numbers
Question

Calculate:

a) 5 \times -4

b) -40 \div -8

a) We have {+5} and {-4}. The signs are different, so the answer will be negative. So, +5 \times -4 = -20

b) We have {-40} and {-8}. The signs are the same, so the answer will be positive. So, -40 \div -8 = 5

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