Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 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: Adjusting Formulas when Pasting.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 25, 2020)
The Paste Special feature of Excel never ceases to be full of surprises. One way you can use the feature results in pasting formulas into cells. That may sound weird, but perhaps an example will clarify the behavior.
Figure 1. The Paste Special dialog box.
Take a look at how the target cells were updated. The formula from the source cell (step 4) was pasted into any formulas in the target range. If a cell in the target range contained a value instead of a formula, the value was converted to a formula and the source formula appended to it.
This can be a great way to use Paste Special when you want to maintain a trail of how you've modified the cells in a range.
ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (11209) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Adjusting Formulas when Pasting.
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