Test Yourself: English Language Questions-Reading Comprehension (Moderate to Difficult) for SBI PO, SEBI Grade A, and IBPS PO


Reading comprehension is one of the scoring topics in the English language section for the one who can comprehend the passage well and is fond of reading. The only drawback of reading comprehension is that it consumes a lot of time while reading the passage. You can improve your reading time only by practicing more and more questions. Apart from that, you can also amend your reading speed by developing reading habits. You can either read a newspaper or a magazine of your choice. Reading can become a little boring for some, if you are the one who falls into this category, I have some tips for you. To tackle this problem, you can start reading the column of the newspaper you are most interested in, it might be the sports section or any section you like. You can also start with your favorite magazine. It can be related to the cars that are launched in the market or any fashion magazine you like. This way you can build a reading habit for yourself which will eventually meliorate your reading speed. Under this topic, you can find at least 8 to 10 questions in the Prelims as well as Mains of any banking or competitive examinations. In today’s article, I have provided 1 set (5 questions) of moderate to difficult level which is expected to be solved in 5 to 10 minutes. These questions will be helpful in the upcoming examination of SBI PO, SEBI Grade A, and IBPS PO.


For all of 2019, investors seemed to have shunned mid- and small-cap stocks. It appears in 2020, they could do an encore. In fact, not much has changed since early-2018, when these stocks started their (3) downtrend. The market continues to remain polarized towards the large- and mega-caps. So, while the Nifty 50 has been scaling new highs, the performance gap has widened further in December 2019 between large- and small-caps.

In 2019, large-cap companies cornered much of the inflows even as their valuations expanded. (4) Contrastingly, the valuation of the mid- and small-cap indices has dropped significantly. The relative performance of the Nifty Smallcap 100 index against that of the Nifty 50 is once again at its previous lows. The Nifty Smallcap 100’s underperformance relative to the benchmark Nifty 50 index, has come close to its previous three bottoms seen in the last 15 years.

That’s not quite the same story playing out in mid-caps, though. Mid-cap (5) performance seems to have held up marginally better in 2019. Some mid-caps have done well as they have seen some earnings growth. However, broadly, mid-cap valuations have come off significantly. In 2019, the price-earnings (P-E) multiple of the Nifty Midcap 100 index stood at about 42 times earnings. As 2019 rounds off to a close, this P-E multiple has dwindled down to just 25 times earnings

1) What is the theme of the passage?

a) 2018 was the beginning of the downfall for mid cap and small cap stocks.

b) PE earnings indicates the poor performance of Mid cap and small cap stocks.

c) Mid cap stocks are doing marginally better than small cap stocks.

d) Small and mid cap stocks have and will continue to perform poorly going forward.

e) None of these

2) What is the tone of the passage?

a) Analytical

b) Critical

c) One-sided

d) Negative

e) Dissatisfied

3) Against the word indicated as (3), in the passage, choose the best word from the choices that can replace the word indicated as (3). If none of the choices can be a replacement, select (e).

a) crash

b) decrement

c) collapse

d) slide

e) None of these

3) Against the word indicated as (4), in the passage, choose the best word from the choices that can replace the word indicated as (4). If none of the choices can be a replacement, select (e).

a) However

b) Strangely

c) Surprisingly

d) In addition

e) None of these

4) Against the word indicated as (5), in the passage, choose the best word from the choices that can replace the word indicated as (5). If none of the choices can be a replacement, select (e).

a) output

b) productivity

c) accomplishment


e) None of these


Ans.1-  (d)

When we talk of the theme, we need to see what is the underlying message of the author. What is that one sentence which will summarize the entire passage.

Option (d) summarizes the entire passage as the passage talks of how midcap and small cap stocks started to fall in around 2018 and the sentiment continues to remain fragile going forward too.

Ans.2- (d)

The best way to know about the tone of the passage is to understand what the author wants you to feel when you read the passage. The entire passage talks of how the sentiment is low (negative) for small cap and mid cap companies. The passage supports this underlying tone with examples and data.

Ans.3- (d)

The marked word is “downtrend”. Option (a) and (c) are too extreme as the passage does not say that these stocks have collapsed or crashed completely. “decrement” is given to someone usually as a pay-cut and we cannot insert it as “started their decrement”. “slide” is a perfect replacement here in place of “downtrend”.

Ans.4- (a)

The marked word is “contrastingly”. This word indicates a turn in what the author was saying. Only Option (a) adds that. Options (b) and (c) add surprise but they don’t indicate a turn in the flow while option (d) simply adds more information.

Ans.5- (e)

The marked word is “performance”. In this context, it is about the rise of the stock prices. None of the given choices among (a) to (d) convey this. Hence, (e) is the answer.\

You can Also attempt Free Full-length Mock Tests for Various examinations like Banking, SSC, Defence and more.

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