Excel: The right format is the wrong format

By J. Carlton Collins, CPA

Q. I can't figure out why the decimals and commas in my Excel-based cash flow statement (using the "Accounting Format") don't line up properly (as pictured below). What's going on?


The problem is that you have selected the Right Align format, which overrides the Accounting Format's decimal orientation. You can correct this problem by selecting column H, and from the Home tab's Alignment group, making sure the Align Right, Align Left, and Align Center formats are deselected. Thereafter, the numbers will align ­according to their decimals, as pictured below.


About the author

J. Carlton Collins (carlton@asaresearch.com) is a technology consultant, a CPE instructor, and a JofA contributing editor.

Note: Instructions for Microsoft Office in “Technology Q&A” refer to the 2007 through 2016 versions, unless otherwise specified.

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