How can I convert text representations of numbers into Excel numbers, especially negative values? For example, the string “9,669.34” (without quotes) should become the number
9,669.34 and the string “2,553.57-” (again, without quotes) should become the number
When I used the formula
=SUBSTITUTE(A1,CHAR(160),"")+0, it worked well, but only for positive values. I received the result
#VALUE! for all negative values.
For (2,553.57), you can use
VALUE, such as
Excel doesn’t seem to recognize 2,553.57- as a valid number when it is a string, so assuming you have a value of “2,553.57-” in A1, you would have to do a little more work:
From the Microsoft site:
- Text can be in any of the constant number, date, or time formats recognized
by Microsoft Excel. If text is not in one of these formats, VALUE returns the
#VALUE! error value.
- You do not generally need to use the VALUE function in a formula because Excel
automatically converts text to numbers as necessary. This function is provided
for compatibility with other spreadsheet programs.
More information can be found at Microsoft’s website: Value Function
If you have a column of these text-based numbers, select the column and use Data ► Data Tools ► Text to Columns ► Fixed Width ► Finish. The trailing negative signs will be used to determine the sign of the resulting number, spaces (leading and/or trailing) will be removed and you will be left with raw numbers that you can apply a currency or number format to.
If the column is originally formatted as Text, change it to General before applying the Text to Columns command.
Another option: Select the column. Copy. Paste Special with “Multiply” option.
Then, as above, you can select Currency or Number in the droplist, decimal places, etc.