A Substitute for the Hard-to-Reach Equal Sign

BY STANLEY ZAROWIN

Why don’t computer manufacturers put an equal sign (=) in a more convenient place on keyboards? It’s such a pain to find that out-of-the-way key we use in so many Excel formulas.

The answer is simple: Keyboard designers aren’t accountants. But cheer up, here’s a simple work-around. When you enter a formula, Excel—which does know the habits of accountants—immediately recognizes that you’re writing a formula. So it lets you go to your favorite geography on the keyboard, the numeric keypad, and use its plus (+) key instead of the main keyboard’s =.

If you type +(C1+C2) and press Enter , Excel adds the requisite = and ignores the + in the calculation. Notice that both the + and the = appear in the formula bar, but Excel includes only the = in its calculation (see screenshot).

SPONSORED WHITE PAPER

Preparing the statement of cash flows

This instructive white paper outlines common pitfalls in the preparation of the statement of cash flows, resources to minimize these risks, and four critical skills your staff will need as you approach necessary changes to the process.

RESOURCES

Keeping you informed and prepared amid the COVID-19 crisis

We’re gathering the latest news stories along with relevant columns, tips, podcasts, and videos on this page, along with curated items from our archives to help with uncertainty and disruption.