Toggle Between Relative and Absolute Cell References in Excel With F4

BY STANLEY ZAROWIN

Q: My partner says there’s an F4 shortcut to creating absolute cell references in Excel formulas, but for the life of me I can’t make it work. What am I doing wrong?

 

A: Your partner is right, but while I can’t tell you what you’re doing wrong, I can tell you how to do it right.

 

When you type the cell reference in your formula, press F4. For example, in the formula =A6*B7, press F4 right after you type the 6 and the absolute reference $ will appear. Press F4 again after you type the 7—and voìla:

 

Wait, there’s more. If you continue to press F4 when your cursor is just to the right of A6, the formula will toggle between relative and absolute references through four options in this order: A6, $A$6, A$6, $A6.

 

SPONSORED REPORT

How to make the most of a negotiation

Negotiators are made, not born. In this sponsored report, we cover strategies and tactics to help you head into 2017 ready to take on business deals, salary discussions and more.

VIDEO

Will the Affordable Care Act be repealed?

The results of the 2016 presidential election are likely to have a big impact on federal tax policy in the coming years. Eddie Adkins, CPA, a partner in the Washington National Tax Office at Grant Thornton, discusses what parts of the ACA might survive the repeal of most of the law.

QUIZ

News quiz: Scam email plagues tax professionals—again

Even as the IRS reported on success in reducing tax return identity theft in the 2016 season, the Service also warned tax professionals about yet another email phishing scam. See how much you know about recent news with this short quiz.