Excel Yourself: Converting negatives to positives

Excel Yourself

Values can frequently be imported into Excel with negative numbers. If you need to convert all the negative numbers to positives there is a technique that doesn’t involve a formula.


This technique also works if you need to reverse the signs of all the numbers.

1.    Enter -1 in a blank cell and copy the cell.

2.    Select the range containing the negative values.

3.    Right click the selected range and choose Paste Special.

4.    In the Operation section and choose Multiply and click OK. See Figure 1
 
All the values will be converted.

Figure 1

Figure 1

Converting Text to Numbers

Another issue with imported values can be that numbers come in formatted as text.

The above technique can be used to resolve this issue in some instances. The only difference is you enter 1 in the cell and copy it, then follow the same steps.
 
Download a sample spreadsheet
 

Neale Blackwood CPA runs A4 Accounting, providing Excel training, webinars and consulting services.


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