Business Studies Course - Investment
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A formal letter - Reading

Read this letter which Biscuit Investments has sent to Ivan, and then answer the questions on the part opposite. Check with "Answers" at the bottom of the page.

Dear Mr English;

Re: Portfolio Manager, Biscuit Investments.

I am delighted to inform you that your application to work at Biscuit Investments has been successful, and we are prepared to offer you a post as a portfolio manager in our Stock Trading department.

This post will be temporary in the first instance, with each party able to terminate with one month's notice. However, your employment contract will stipulate that within nine months, Biscuit Investments will either offer you a permanent place or dispense with your services.

As you are aware, Biscuit are an established trading house with a long history of dealing in the LSE (London Stock Exchange). We are sure that you bring the necessary skills and abilities to complement the strengths of the present team. In the first instance you will be working under the supervision of our Miss Dodd, who will help you learn the ropes. It is expected, though, that you will be able to stand on your own feet within a month, after which you will report only to Mr Barwell, the department head.

Please find enclosed a copy of the employment contract, which we require you to sign and return within a fortnight. If you have any questions, please contact our Ms. Meredith, who will be happy to assist you. May I also take this opportunity of welcoming you on board at Biscuit.

Yours cordially,

Magnus Blake M.D.


1. The purpose of the letter is to ...
a. congratulate Ivan.   
b. wish Ivan success.   
c. give Ivan a job.   
d. to prepare Ivan as a manager.   

2. Ivan will be employed ...
a. for at least a month.   
b. for at least nine months.   
c. until he is fired.   
d. until he resigns.   

3. At the end of nine months ...
a. Ivan may be unemployed.   
b. Ivan may have a full-time job.   
c. both a & b.   
d. either a or b.   

4. Who is Miss Dodd likely to be?
a. Ivan's boss.   
b. A colleague.   
c. A member of the LSE.   
d. Mr Barwell's secretary.   

5. When starting at Biscuit Ivan will be ...
a. independent.   
b. on trial.   
c. an apprentice.   
d. dispensed with.   

6. Where is the employment contract?
a. arriving within a fortnight.   
b. with Ms Meredith.   
c. with Miss Dodd.   
d. with the letter.   

7. What does Ms signify?
a. Master of Business Science.   
b. Manager's secretary.   
c. Miss or Mrs.   
d. Mesdame.   

8. Does Biscuit Investments have other portfolio managers?
a. Definitely.   
b. Probably.   
c. Probably not.   
d. Certainly not.