Business Studies Course - Investment
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A formal memo - Reading

Read this newspaper article about a fast-food company, and then asnwer the questions on the right. When you have finished, click "answers" to check your results.


From : S. Dodd
To: M. Blake

Re: Ivan English - first month.

My brief in this matter has been to observe, but not intervene in, the investment decisions of Ivan English, who recently joined our department.

First of all, I would again like to point out that Mr English has not been told that I am writing these reports. This could jeopardise future relations between this employee and the company, as well as cause considerable strain in interpersonal relationships within the department if Mr English finds out what I am doing.

That said, I must now report that Mr English has made three investments. Each of these has been diligently researched, and Mr English has not made his decisions lightly. The three investments are in 1) Rymington FC, a football club that is listed on the stock market. 2) Xsolaris; a technology start-up using solar power, and 3) Wuffyburgers; a fast food chain which is apparently about to announce a major initiative.

I have not studied these investments to the same degree that Mr English has. Still, I have reservations about all of them. Football clubs are notoriously bad value for money, and though Mr English has explained why he is buying the shares, I still feel the level of risk is high. Xsolaris seems a good company with good prospects, but the business climate is very difficult. Wuffyburgers is a very risky move by an entrepreneur who may be out of his depth.

Mr English has an obvious predilection for risky investments. While any one of his purchases is individually justifiable, I think he should now make some safer investments.


1. The information in this memo is ...
a. confidential.   
b. general knowledge.   
c. business information.   
d. interpersonal.   

2. How does Sally feel about writing the memo?
a. Confident.   
b. Reserved.   
c. Unhappy.   
d. Not involved.   

3. How will Ivan feel if he finds out about the memo?
a. Worried.   
b. Angry with Sally   
c. Angry with the firm.   
d. Both b & c.   

4. What is Sally's opinion of Ivan's investments?
a. Ivan has chosen well.   
b. Ivan has chosen very badly.   
c. Ivan has taken risks.   
d. Ivan is out of his depth.    

5. What does Sally say about Rymington FC?
a. Ivan decided lightly.   
b. The shares will lose value.   
c. The club is notorious.   
d. Football clubs are bad investments.   

6. Why does Sally think Xsolaris will do badly?
a. Solar power won't work.   
b. The weather is too bad for solar power.   
c. It's a bad time for new companies.   
d. Xsolaris has only prospects.   

7. What does Sally recommend?
a. Ivan should take fewer risks.   
b. Ivan should be replaced.   
c. Ivan should sell his shares.   
d. Ivan should justify himself.   

8. How would you describe Sally's report?
a. Balanced.   
b. Positive.   
c. Negative.   
d. Non-commital.