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6.4. Word-processor punctuation marks and spacing

The detailed rules presented in the following table are the result of an interinstitutional agreement. National typographic codes differ for some marks. However, for the sake of clarity and because of our multilingual environment, certain choices have been made to establish a common standard.

Typographic mark Word-processor
(Word etc.)
Alphanumeric code Typographic presentation
(printers and desktop
(a) Punctuation marks and symbols
, xx, xx   xx,■xx (00,00) (*)
; xx; xx   xx;■xx
. xx. Xx   xx.■Xx (00.00) (*)
: xx: xx   xx:■xx
! xx! Xx   xx!■Xx
? xx? Xx   xx?■Xx
- xx-xx   xx-xx
xx — xx Alt 0151 xx■—■xx
/ xx/xx   xx/xx
( ) xx (xx) xx   xx■(xx)■xx
[ ] xx [xx] xx   xx■[xx]■xx
‘ ’ xx xx xx (**) Alt 0145 xx Alt 0146 xx■xx■xx
“ ” xx xx xx (**) Alt 0147 xx Alt 0148 xx■xx■xx
% 00•%   00□%
+ +•00   +□00
–•00 Alt 150 –□00
± ±•00 Alt 241 ±□00
°C (°F) 00•°C   00□°C
° 00°   00°
& xx & xx   xx■&■xx
xx … xx Alt + Ctrl + (full stop) xx■…■xx
(b) Footnote reference and footnotes (***)
xx (1) xx•(1)
(use footnote mode)
In the Official Journal and in multilingual texts, the decimal comma is used. In English texts other than the Official Journal, the decimal point is used. See also Section 6.5.
If the software allows for differentiation between opening and closing quotation marks, then use them in the exact form required, i.e. singles for singles, doubles for doubles.
When automatically creating footnotes after the insertion of a footnote mark, many word processing programmes will not place the figure in brackets. In finished documents it is necessary to put them in (in documents intended for publication this will be carried out by the printer).
■ =
soft space.
□ =
hard half-space (thin space).
• =
hard space. (Use of the hard space and hard half-space should be kept to the absolute minimum, as they create spacing problems during composition).
Last updated: 22.4.2015
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