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Alright, I've been trying to work this linear algebra problem out for a bit and I don't seem to be getting anywhere. The problem is this:

Assume that $A=M^{-1}BM$. Show that $\det(A-\lambda I)=\det(B-\lambda I)$.

So my instincts tell me that this has something to do with the fact that $A^n$ can be expressed as $M^{-1}BM$

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This rather has something to do with the fact that det(UV)=det(U)det(V) for suitable matrices U and V... – Did Oct 5 '11 at 7:20
Hint: $\lambda I = M^{-1}(\lambda I) M$. – Ted Oct 5 '11 at 7:23
up vote 8 down vote accepted

A small hint: In the expression $\det(A-\lambda I)$ you can use the given fact that $A=M^{-1}BM$ of course, but also that $I=M^{-1}IM$.

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BAH! That was simple. I should not be doing these things at midnight. Thank you so much, problem solved. – crf Oct 5 '11 at 7:27
@Colin: You're welcome. – Hans Lundmark Oct 5 '11 at 7:32
@Colin: If you're happy with Hans's answer, please remember to click the checkmark to the left of his answer, so that the software considers this resolved. :) – J. M. Oct 5 '11 at 8:59
Thanks, didn't know that. – crf Oct 12 '11 at 5:35

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