Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. 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: Deriving an Absolute Value in a Macro.

# Deriving an Absolute Value in a Macro

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated November 10, 2023)
This tip applies to Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365

VBA provides a function to return the absolute value of an expression. For those who might not remember from math class, an absolute value is the positive equivalent of any expression. Thus, if a formula would normally result in a negative value, such as —27, the absolute value of that formula would result in the positive equivalent, or 27.

The syntax for the absolute value function is as follows:

```x = Abs(y)
```

where x is the result and y is a value or an expression that evaluates to a value.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (10368) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Deriving an Absolute Value in a Macro.

##### 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

Resetting Spelling and Grammar Checking on Multiple Documents

Things that are accomplished easily with a single document (such as resetting spelling and grammar checking settings) can ...

Discover More

Using Less Paper on Printouts

If a worksheet contains nothing but a bunch of values in column A, you may be loathe to print the worksheet and "waste" a ...

Discover More

Find and Replace in Headers

Using Find and Replace is something quite routine in Excel, as it easily allows you to find and replace information in ...

Discover More

Solve Real Business Problems Master business modeling and analysis techniques with Excel and transform data into bottom-line results. This hands-on, scenario-focused guide shows you how to use the latest Excel tools to integrate data from multiple tables. Check out Microsoft Excel 2013 Data Analysis and Business Modeling today!

##### More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Changing Directories in a Macro

Need to specify which directory on your hard drive should be used by a macro? It's easy to do using the ChDir command.

Discover More

Getting a File Name

Does your macro need to allow the user to specify a particular file name that should be used by the macro? Here's a quick ...

Discover More

Magnifying Only the Current Cell

You can use the Zoom feature of Excel to magnify what Excel shows of your workbook, but it affects the entire screen. ...

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}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. Youâ€™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 one more than 7?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your commentâ€”just use the simple form above!)

##### 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.

##### 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.)