Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Excel Has Got Your Number(s)
Figure 4–69. Each row, its selected cells merged
The respective rows are merged—but here, you see that the data in them are centered. At this
point, you need to then click the standard Center button in the Alignment Group in order to center
each bit of data in each new merged cell in each row. Inelegant, but it works.
Merge & Center: Merge Cells duplicates the Merge cells command we described above in the
Alignment Dialog Box, and Merge & Center: Unmerge Cells returns all cells back to their original
An important additional note about the Merge Cells options: Be sure that only the leftmost of the
cells you wish to merge has data in it. Thus if I want to merge cells J12 through N12, and any cells other
than J12 have data in them, those data will be lost when you go ahead with the merge—though Excel
wi l l wa r n y ou a bout thi s pr ospe ct wi th a n on scr e e n me ssa g e .
Excel Has Got Your Number(s)
Now that we’ve gotten ourselves oriented and aligned, we can push on to a group whose modest
bearing belies its importance—the Number group (Figure 4–70):
Figure 4–70. The Number button group
Needless to say, formatting numbers is a pretty essential Excel task, but with a couple of slightly
pause-giving exceptions, the task is pretty easy. And the number formats you’re most likely to need are
a snap.
Let’s start with the group’s lower tier, moving left to right. That first button, picturing a pile of
coins and a bank note of indeterminate origin, enables you to format numbers in currency mode—but
unfortunately it’s called, rather cryptically, Accounting Number Format , wi th i ts ca pti on a sk i n g y ou to
“Choose an alternate currency format for the selected cell” (of course you know that means cells , too).
That term “alternate” is pretty cryptic, too—but what it means here simply is that clicking the button
will impart a currency motif from one monetary system—Euro instead of Dollars, for example. (But as
we’ll see, there’s a slightly different format out there called Currency, too—but we’ll get to that.)
If you select a cell or a range of cells and click the Accounting Number Format, this is what
happe n s by de faul t:
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