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Essentially they accomplish a NOP type of instruction. You are correct that
NEXT SENTENCE will advance to the statement following the next ".". CONTINUE
however will advance to the next logical statement following either a Scope
Delimiter or ".".
So (my own opinion and style for better or worse) I do not use any more than
the required periods in a program and always use scope delimiters, or to
state it differently, don't mix scope delimiters and periods in the same

It has been a while since I have used Microfocus Cobol, but if you have the
complete workbench you can follow how these two statements behave. Now, in
the AS/400 Cobol Reference manual V3, pg 277 there is conflicting
information, as far as Cobol goes, "If the END-IF phrase is specified, the
NEXT SENTENCE phrase must not be specified" however the IBM extension says
"NEXT SENTENCE can be specified with END-IF" so since you are using
Microfocus COBOL, I would check your directives and make sure you are
pretending to be the correct compiler.

-----Original Message-----
From: David Silber []
Sent: Wednesday, June 19, 2002 8:47 AM
To: ''

I found a posting in the archives from May 2001 that dealt with things to
watch for when moving from OPM to ILE COBOL. One of the items dealt with
NEXT SENTENCE. A reply claimed that in OPM COBOL, NEXT SENTENCE worked like
CONTINUE (incorrect) while in ILE COBOL it skipped to the statement
following the next period (correct). Does anyone have any more details? We
have experienced some funnies with NEXT SENTENCE when END-IFs were added to
our code but the funnies seemed to be when our application was run on Unix
(Micro Focus COBOL), not AS/400. The archives search revealed no other entry
for NEXT SENTENCE so clarification would be very useful. Thanks.

David Silber

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