Change the number of decimal places displayed

For numbers that are already entered on a worksheet (worksheet: The primary document that you use in Excel to store and work with data. Also called a spreadsheet. A worksheet consists of cells that are organized into columns and rows; a worksheet is always stored in a workbook.), you can increase or decrease the number of places that are displayed after the decimal point by using the toolbar buttons. You can also specify the number of decimal places that you want to use when you apply a built-in number format to the cells or data. To have Excel enter the decimal points for you, you can specify a fixed decimal point for numbers.

What do you want to do?

Increase or decrease the decimal places on a worksheet

Specify the decimal places for a built-in number format

Specify a fixed decimal point for numbers

Increase or decrease the decimal places on a worksheet

  1. Select the cell or range (range: Two or more cells on a sheet. The cells in a range can be adjacent or nonadjacent.) of cells that contains the numbers for which you want to change the decimal places.

ShowHow to select a cell or a range

To select Do this
A single cell Click the cell, or press the arrow keys to move to the cell.
A range of cells

Click the first cell in the range, and then drag to the last cell, or hold down SHIFT while you press the arrow keys to extend the selection.

You can also select the first cell in the range and then press F8 to extend the selection by using the arrow keys.

A large range of cells Click the first cell in the range, and then hold down SHIFT while you click the last cell in the range. You can scroll to make the last cell visible.
All cells on a worksheet

Click the Select All button.

Select All button

To select the entire worksheet, you can also press CTRL+A.

 Note   If the worksheet contains data, CTRL+A selects the current region. Pressing CTRL+A a second time selects the entire worksheet.

Nonadjacent cells or cell ranges

Select the first cell or range of cells, and then hold down CTRL while you select the other cells or ranges.

You can also select the first cell or range of cells and then press SHIFT+F8 to add another nonadjacent cell or range to the selection.

 Note   You cannot cancel the selection of a cell or range of cells in a nonadjacent selection without canceling the entire selection.

An entire row or column

Click the row or column heading.

Worksheet showing row heading and column heading

Callout 1 Row heading
Callout 2 Column heading

You can also select cells in a row or column by selecting the first cell and then pressing CTRL+SHIFT+ARROW KEY (RIGHT ARROW or LEFT ARROW for rows, UP ARROW or DOWN ARROW for columns).

 Note   If the row or column contains data, CTRL+SHIFT+ARROW KEY selects the row or column to the last used cell. Pressing CTRL+SHIFT+ARROW KEY a second time selects the entire row or column.

Adjacent rows or columns Drag across the row or column headings. Or select the first row or column; then hold down SHIFT while you select the last row or column.
Nonadjacent rows or columns Click the column or row heading of the first row or column in your selection; then hold down CTRL while you click the column or row headings of other rows or columns that you want to add to the selection.
More or fewer cells than the active selection Hold down SHIFT while you click the last cell that you want to include in the new selection. The rectangular range between the active cell (active cell: The selected cell in which data is entered when you begin typing. Only one cell is active at a time. The active cell is bounded by a heavy border.) and the cell that you click becomes the new selection.

 Note   To cancel a selection of cells, click any cell on the worksheet.

  1. On the Formatting toolbar (toolbar: A bar with buttons and options that you use to carry out commands. To display a toolbar, press ALT and then SHIFT+F10.), do one of the following:
    • Click Increase Decimal Button image to display more digits after the decimal point.
    • Click Decrease Decimal Button image to display fewer digits after the decimal point.

Tip    If the Formatting toolbar is not displayed, point to Toolbars on the View menu, and then click Formatting.

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Specify the decimal places for a built-in number format

  1. On the Format menu, click Cells, and then click the Number tab.
  2. In the Category list, click Number, Currency, Accounting, Percentage, or Scientific.
  3. In the Decimal places box, enter the number of decimal places that you want to display.

 Note   You need to specify the number of decimal places every time you apply a Number, Currency, Accounting, Percentage, or Scientific format. To permanently specify decimal places for a number format, you can create a custom number format by clicking Custom in the Category list. For more information, see Create or delete a custom number format.

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Specify a fixed decimal point for numbers

  1. On the Tools menu, click Options.
  2. On the Edit tab, select the Fixed decimal check box.
  3. In the Places box, enter a positive number for digits to the right of the decimal point or a negative number for digits to the left of the decimal point.

For example, if you enter 3 in the Places box and then type 2834 in a cell, the value will be 2.834. If you enter -3 in the Places box and then type 283 in a cell, the value will be 283000.

  1. Click OK.

The FIX indicator appears in the status bar.

  1. On the worksheet, click a cell, and then type the number that you want.

 Note   The data that you typed before you selected the Fixed decimal check box is not affected.

Tips    

  • To temporarily override the fixed decimal option, type a decimal point when you type the number.
  • To remove decimal points from numbers that you already entered with fixed decimals:
    1. On the Edit tab of the Options dialog box, clear the Fixed decimal check box.
    2. In an empty cell, type a number such as 10, 100, or 1,000, depending on the number of decimal places that you want to remove.

For example, type 100 in the cell if the numbers contain two decimal places and you want to convert them to whole numbers.

  1. Click Copy Button image (or press CTRL+C) to copy the cell to the Clipboard, and then select the cells that contain the numbers with decimal places.
  2. On the Edit menu, click Paste Special, and then click Multiply.

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Applies to:
Excel 2003