ERROR 22-322: Syntax error, expecting one of the following: a name, *.

This is one of the classic SAS errors that you can get from PROC SQL and it can be thrown by a number of things. Missing out a comma in a list of variables on a SELECT statement is one situation that will do it, as will having an extraneous one. As I discovered recently, an ill-defined SAS function nesting like LEFT(TRIM(PERIOD,BEST.)) will have the same effect; notice the missing PUT function in the example. The latter surprised me because I might have expected something more descriptive for this as would be the case in data step code. In the event, it took some looking before the problem hit me because it’s amazing how blind you can become to things that are staring you in the face. Familiarity really can make you pay less attention.

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