Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Using automatic number formatting
If you move the cell pointer to a cell that has a formatted value, the Formula bar displays the value in its unformatted
state because the formatting affects only how the value appears in the cell — not the actual value contained in the
cell. There are a few exceptions, however. When you enter a date or a time, Excel always displays the value as a date
or a time, even though it’s stored internally as a value. Also, values that use the Percentage format display with a
percent sign in the Formula bar.
Using automatic number formatting
Excel is smart enough to perform some formatting for you automatically. For example, if
you enter 12.2% into a cell, Excel knows that you want to use a percentage format and
applies it for you automatically. If you use commas to separate thousands (such as 123,456),
Excel applies comma formatting for you. And if you precede your value with a dollar sign,
the cell is formatted for currency (assuming that the dollar sign is your system currency
A handy default feature in Excel makes entering percentage values into cells easier. If a cell is formatted to display
as a percent, you can simply enter a normal value (for example, 12.5 for 12.5%). To enter values less than 1%,
precede the value with a zero (for example, 0.52 for 0.52%). If this automatic percent entry feature isn’t working (or if
you prefer to enter the actual value for percents), access the Excel Options dialog box and click the Advanced tab. In
the Editing Options section, locate the Enable Automatic Percent Entry check box and add or remove the check mark.
Formatting numbers by using the Ribbon
The Home
Number group in the Ribbon contains controls that let you quickly apply
common number formats (see Figure 13.13).
FIGURE 13.13
You can fi nd number formatting commands in the Number group of the Home tab.
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