The CONTINUE statement causes the flow of control to continue at the next statement. Not quite a no-op, as it can influence control flow when inside compound statement sequences, in particular IF/THEN/ELSE.
A handy? example is during early development and building with and without debugging aids.
CALL "CBL_OC_DUMP" USING structure ON EXCEPTION CONTINUE END-CALL
That code, while expensive, will allow for formatted memory dumps when the module
CBL_OC_DUMP is linked into the executable, but will harmlessly fail when it is not. *That trick is only applicable during early stages of development. The expense of a dynamic lookup failure is not something to leave in active code, and those lines should be removed from the source as soon as any initial concerns are satisfied in alpha testing. On first day coding, it can be a handy aid. By second day coding ON EXCEPTION CONTINUE occurrences should be wiped clean.
This is contrived; but some COBOL programmers may prefer the positive clarity, versus using
NOT in conditional expressions (especially with the logic error prone
var NOT = value OR other-value).
if action-flag = "C" or "R" or "U" or "D" continue else display "invalid action-code" upon syserr perform report-exception exit section end-if