The following common COBOL data types are discussed below:

- Binary
- Computational (comp)
- Comp-1
- Comp-2
- Comp-3
- Packed Decimal

**BINARY **

Specified for binary data items. Such items have a decimal equivalent consisting of the decimal digits 0 through 9, plus a sign. Negative numbers are represented as the two’s complement of the positive number with the same absolute value. The amount of storage occupied by a binary item depends on the number of decimal digits defined in its PICTURE clause:

**Digits in PICTURE Clause Storage Occupied **

1 through 4 2 bytes (halfword)

5 through 9 4 bytes (fullword)

10 through 18 8 bytes (doubleword) │

The leftmost bit of the storage area is the operational sign.

**PACKED-DECIMAL **

Specified for internal decimal items. Such an item appears in storage in packed decimal format. There are 2 digits for each character position, except for the trailing character position, which is occupied by the low-order digit and the sign. Such an item can contain any of the digits 0 through 9, plus a sign, representing a value not exceeding 18 decimal digits.

The sign representation uses the same bit configuration as the 4-bit sign representation in zoned decimal fields.

**COMPUTATIONAL or COMP **

Representation of the COMPUTATIONAL phrase is system-dependent and is normally assigned to representations that yield the greatest efficiency when arithmetic operations are performed on that system.

**COMPUTATIONAL-1 or COMP-1 **

Specified for internal floating-point items (single precision). COMP-1 items are 4 bytes long. The sign is contained in the first bit of the leftmost byte and the exponent is contained in the remaining 7 bits. The last 3 bytes contain the mantissa.

**COMPUTATIONAL-2 or COMP-2 **

Specified for internal floating-point items (double precision). COMP-2 items are 8 bytes long. The sign is contained in the first bit of the leftmost byte and the remaining 7 bits contain the exponent. The remaining 7 bytes contain the mantissa.

**COMPUTATIONAL-3 or COMP-3 (internal decimal) **

For VS COBOL II, this is the equivalent of PACKED-DECIMAL.

**COMPUTATIONAL-4 or COMP-4 (binary) **

For VS COBOL II this is the equivalent of BINARY.

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