Coins are to be put into 7 pockets so that each has at least one coin. At most 3 of the pockets are to contain the same number of coins, and no two of the remaining pockets are to contain an equal number of coins. What is the least possible number of coins needed for the pockets? A very poorly stated word problem.

My Effort:

I think the goal here is to minimize the number of coins. So, I should start by placing 1 coin into as many pockets as possible. The question states that this can be done for only 3 pockets. After that I must put a different number of coins into the remaining pockets. The different coins are: 2, 3, 4 and 5 coins.

I then calculated: (3 × 1) + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 = 17 coins minimum.

Is this right? This problem took me 20 minutes to solve. This is a GMAT question. No, I am not preparing for the GMAT or any other exam at my age. I like puzzles and math problems.