Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Fixing the Decimal Point.

Fixing the Decimal Point

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 19, 2017)

2

Most electronic calculators have an option that allows you to specify a fixed location for a decimal point. This comes in real handy when you are working with dollars and cents, for instance. With the decimal point fixed at two places, you can enter "213" and have the calculator translate it as "2.13". Likewise, if you enter "2", the calculator translates it as "0.02".

Excel has a feature that allows you to do the same thing. To fix the number of decimal places assumed when inputting information, follow these steps:

  1. Display the Excel Options dialog box. (In Excel 2007 click the Office button and then click Excel Options. In Excel 2010 and later versions display the File tab of the ribbon and then click Options.)
  2. At the left of the dialog box click Advanced.
  3. Under Editing Options, make sure that the Automatically Insert a Decimal Point check box is selected. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The advanced options of the Excel Options dialog box.

  5. Using the Places control, specify how many decimal places Excel should assume.
  6. Click the OK button.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (7565) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Fixing the Decimal Point.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Changing Icons

Windows provide a surprising amount of flexibility when it comes to what you see on the screen. You can even make changes ...

Discover More

Finding a Change in Typeface

When you format a document, you can go so far as to change the font of each character in the document. This may be ...

Discover More

Keep Your Headings in View

Headings on a table are very important when it comes to understanding what is in the table. This tip explains an easy way ...

Discover More

Save Time and Supercharge Excel! Automate virtually any routine task and save yourself hours, days, maybe even weeks. Then, learn how to make Excel do things you thought were simply impossible! Mastering advanced Excel macros has never been easier. Check out Excel 2010 VBA and Macros today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Controlling Where You Edit Cell Contents

You can edit cell information either in the Formula bar or in the cell itself. Here's how you can configure Excel to ...

Discover More

Setting a Default File Format

Excel normally saves workbooks using a default file format that is peculiar to your version of the program. You can ...

Discover More

Entered Values are Divided by 100

Enter a value into a cell and "poof!" it is automatically divided by 100. What's going on, and how can you fix it so that ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 4 + 7?

2017-08-19 09:14:27

Allen

On the Mac, Mike, choose Excel > Preferences > Edit. You can change the "Display this number of decimal places" setting.

-Allen


2017-08-19 08:04:45

Mike Smith

Unfortunately this doesn't seem to work in Excel for Mac Version 15.32 (170309).

There is no File tab available in the ribbon and no Options panel anywhere that I can find.

Any suggestions would be very welcome - this tip alone would save me hundreds of clicks a week!


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the ribbon interface (Excel 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.