An easier way to enter fractions in Excel

Enter fractions into Excel without formatting

Not too long ago, Mary Ann Richards told you to enter a fraction in Excel by formatting the cell first. Why should you bother? Well, if you don’t, Excel interprets a fraction as a date. For example, if you enter ½, Excel returns 2-Jan. Now, Mary Ann suggested that you format the cell first, which definitely works and might be the most appropriate way to go. However, for a quick fix, simply enter a 0 before the fraction. For instance, to enter the literal fraction ½, enter 0 ½ instead (there’s a space between 0 and ½). It works like a charm!

About Susan Harkins

Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.

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