SIGN Clause

The SIGN clause specifies the location and format of an item's operational sign.

General Format


Syntax Rules

  1. The SIGN clause may appear only in a numeric data description entry whose PICTURE string contains the S symbol, or on a group item that contains such an entry.
  2. The item must have USAGE DISPLAY.
  3. A SIGN clause may not be used with an external floating-point data item.

General Rules

  1. If the SIGN clause is omitted for a data item, then the operational sign is incorporated into the final digit of the data item. The S symbol does not occupy any space in the data item in this case.
  2. If the SIGN clause is specified, but without the SEPARATE CHARACTER phrase, then the sign is incorporated into the first or last digit of the data item as specified.
  3. If the SEPARATE CHARACTER phrase is specified in the SIGN clause, then the S symbol represents a separate character position and it adds one to the size of the data item. This character is located as the first or last character of the data item as specified in the clause. The sign is represented with a "+" or "-" character as appropriate. The zero value may have either sign.
  4. If the SIGN phrase is specified for a group item, then it applies to each subordinate elementary numeric data item. A SIGN phrase specified for an elementary data item takes precedence over a SIGN phrase specified for one of its group items. If more than one group item has a SIGN phrase specified for it in a hierarchy, the lowest level one takes precedence.