2 times 3 is 6, but what is the answer if both 2 and 3 are negative numbers? Here we will determine if the answer to negative 2 times negative 3 is positive 6 or negative 6.
There are many different ways to explain and determine if the answer to negative 2 times negative 3 is -6 or +6 using mathematical terms such as additive inverse and mathematical laws like the Distribute Law.
We will take a different approach - process of elimination: We will simply test if -6 is the correct answer using basic algebra.
We will test if -6 is correct by setting up the equation negative 2 times negative 3 equals negative 6, and then simplifying the equation to see if it is true.
(-2) (-3) = (-6)
Divide both sides of the equation by (-3) :
The numerator and denominator on the left side both have (-3) which even each other out and can be removed:
The numerator and denominator on the right side both have a minus sign (-) which even each other out and can be removed:
A numerator of 6 and denominator of 3 on the right side is the same as 6 divided by 3 which is 2. Now we end up with this untrue equation:
(-2) = (2)
-2 is NOT equal to 2, thus we have proven that negative 2 times negative 3 is not equal to -6. The answer must therefore be 6:
-2 x -3 = 6
The above applies to all math problems where you multiply two negative numbers. Multiplying two negative numbers such as negative 2 times negative 3 will always have a positive answer.
Negative Times Negative Calculator
Here you can multiply another two negative numbers together.
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Here is the next problem on our list that we have explained and calculated.