Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. 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: Returning Least-Significant Digits.

Returning Least-Significant Digits

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 4, 2015)

Glenn has a need to return the three least significant digits of a four-digit number and is wondering how this can best be done. As with many tasks in Excel, there are a number of ways you can derive the desired information. One way is to use the MOD function, in this manner:

=MOD(A1,1000)

This function divides the value in cell A1 by 1000 and then returns what is left over. Provided that the value in A1 is a four-digit integer, then you'll get the result you desire.

Another similar method of determining the desired values is to use a function that is normally used with text values:

=RIGHT(A1,3)

This returns the three right-most characters (digits) of whatever is in cell A1. If you think that it is possible that A1 could have some non-digit characters in it, then you should wrap the function in the VALUE function, like this:

=VALUE(RIGHT(A1,3))

Of course, it is very possible that any of the approaches discussed so far will give undesired results. While they work well if the value in A1 is an integer value, they don't work that well if the value is a real number, such as 12.36 or 105.2, having four significant digits. In these cases you may want to use a formula such as the following:

=RIGHT(0.0001*A1,3)

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (10785) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Returning Least-Significant Digits.

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

Make that Chart Quickly!

Need to generate a chart in the fastest possible way? Just use this shortcut key and you'll have one faster than you can ...

Discover More

Creating a Center Across Selection Button

The ability to center text across a range of cells has long been a staple of experienced Excel users. Here's how to ...

Discover More

Duplex by Default

Many printers these days have the capability to print on both sides of a piece of paper. You may want Word to use this ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Converting from Relative to Absolute

Addresses used in a formula can be either relative or absolute. If you need to switch between the two types of ...

Discover More

Finding the Directory Name

Need to know the directory (folder) in which a workbook was saved? You can create a formula that will return this ...

Discover More

Counting Precedents and Dependents

Do you need to know how many precedents or dependents there are on a worksheet? You could count them manually, or you ...

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 8 + 0?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—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.

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.