How to Copy Formulas Without Changing Variables in Excel

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Microsoft Excel is a widely used spreadsheet program that can be used for budgets, statistics and other spreadsheet tasks. Excel has the ability to recognize formulas that use the inputs of other cells in the spreadsheet. For example, if cell A1 had your income and cell A2 has your expenses, you could enter a formula of "=A1-A2" in cell A3 to calculate your profit or loss. The variables are relative by default, meaning that if you copied the formula to cell B3, the formula would change to "=B1-B2" automatically. However, you can set the formula to copy and paste without changing the variables.

  • Enter the formula you plan to use into the desired cell in Excel. For example, you may want to add cells A5 and B5 so you would enter "=A5+B5" in the desired cell.

  • Type a "$" before the column letter if you do not want the column variable to change when you copy and paste the cell. For example, if you always wanted to use the related cell in column A, you would alter the formula to be "=$A5+B5" instead of "=A5+B5."

  • Type a "$" before the row number if you do not want the row number to change when you copy and paste the cell. For example, if you always wanted to use the related cell in row 5, you would alter the formula to be "=A$5+B5" instead of "=A5+B5."

  • Type "$"s before both the column letter and row number if you want to use that specific reference when you copy and paste the cell. For example, if you always wanted the formula to use cell A%, you would alter the formula to be "=$A$5+B5" instead of "=A5+B5."

  • Copy the cell by selecting the cell and pressing "Crtl" and "C" at the same time then paste the cell by clicking the cell that you want to paste the formula in by clicking "Crtl" and "V" at the same time.

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