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Beady eye for the small print

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Published: March 23 2009 02:00 | Last updated: March 23 2009 02:00

From Mr Dick Martin.

Sir, Jonathan Guthrie has provided your readers with a rich seam of amusement over the Gem of Tanzania, and he has reminded us of the hidden gems which lurk in the small print of company information, if only one bothers to seek them out.

Lex (March 19) states “Royal Dutch Shell’s announcement yesterday of an $8.3bn hole in its pension fund is a sign of the times”. In fact Shell disclosed the underfunding quite clearly when it issued its 2008 results on January 29, though it was buried rather deep in the notes.

Perhaps if Mr Guthrie were transferred to Lex for a spell, Lex might spot such gems of information when they are first made public, rather than many weeks later?

Dick Martin,
Tonbridge, Kent, UK and its also non-profit sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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