Hyphens Exercise (637)

In each sentence, determine whether one or hyphens should be inserted or omitted.

Answers and Explanations

1.
Original: This type of behavior has already been well-documented in recent years.
Correct : This type of behavior has already been well documented in recent years.

Hyphens are not required in phrasal adjectives that follow a noun.

2.
Original: The report named the highest paying companies for sales jobs.
Correct : The report named the highest-paying companies for sales jobs.

This sentence refers to the companies that are highest paying, not paying companies that are highest, so "highest-paying," as a phrasal adjective, should be hyphenated.

3.
Original: We have move-in ready homes for right-now buyers.
Correct : We have move-in-ready homes for right-now buyers.

The homes are ready to be moved into, so the entire three-word phrasal adjective should be hyphenated. "Right-now buyers" shows correct hyphenation of a two-word phrasal adjective.

4.
Original: The method he eventually employed was tried-and-true.
Correct : The method he eventually employed was tried and true.

The phrasal adjective "tried and true" is hyphenated only before a noun (as in "a tried-and-true method").

5.
Original: The letter also calls for a five year plan to bring the department’s aging ambulance and fire trucks and engines up to date.
Correct : The letter also calls for a five-year plan to bring the department’s aging ambulance and fire trucks and engines up to date.

The plan covers a span of five years, so the phrasal adjective should be hyphenated.

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