Can't click on cells; cells not populating immediately; calculations not completing imediately

New Contributor

Hello all,

I have a question about numerous issues I've been having in Excel. I'm on a 2020 Macbook Pro, using Excel for Mac, version 16.48. I bought the software last fall when I got a new Macbook and it wouldn't work with the older version I'd previously been using. I've been using Excel for 30 years, and I've never seen anything like this. The issues seem to be getting worse, i.e., happening more often. They are:

When I get to the bottom of the rows that are visible on the screen, instead of scrolling to show the next line with every line that I add, sometimes it will scroll to the next available line, then partway through inputting into the first cell, it will skip to another open spreadsheet and begin inputting in that spreadsheet. At first I thought it was just an errant keystroke that I'd made, but it's happened often enough that I know that it's not my fault.

Sometimes I can’t click on a cell. I can click on a nearby cell, then use the up or down arrow or return to get to the one I want, but I can’t just click on the one that I want. And I can't click on any other cell in that row. Nor can I select the entire row. And sometimes when I click on a cell, the cell box expands so that it looks like it's two cells deep. The cursor position shows me in the cell I clicked on, but the data that I’m entering in the cell shows in the cell below the one I’m entering it into. When I hit return or tab to move to the next cell, the data shows up in the cell I clicked on - just not while I’m entering it.

When I type or paste a number or formula into a cell, sometimes it isn’t visible right away. I may have to hit save to see it. Or work a few more functions before it’ll show up in the cell. I can go to the cell and see it in the menu bar above, but the cell appears to be blank until the cell contents finally appear. Related to this, sometimes when I enter a number in a cell that is linked to a formula further down in the spreadsheet, the calculation in the later cell isn't always made right away. It make take 10-15 seconds, or may only change when I scroll.

Sometimes a cell picks up a format from an earlier cell, despite the fact that I have deselected “Extend data range formats and formulas”.


This happens in every single file I work in, whether it's old or new, created from a template or just a blank worksheet.

Note that I'm also having a number of Word issues as well. I'm including them here in case they indicate that there is a wider issue with Office, rather than specifically Excel.

Word Issues
When I try to highlight text (whether a word, line, or paragraph), Word doesn’t highlight. It may be able to highlight above or below the text I want to highlight, but it’s as though what I want to highlight just isn’t there. I can edit the text, but I can’t place the cursor to know where I’m editing; it’s only after I’ve made the edit that I can tell where it was done.

Sometimes it’ll give me a duplicate of a row, right above the existing row. I can’t highlight the duplicate; I can only work on the original row. If I go to print the document, it’ll delete the duplicated row and return the doc to normal.

Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated!

Thank you,


4 Replies

hello @vtfiber do you have the Workbook Calculation checked on the Automatic option?

Excel Options, Formulas is where you can verify

Hi @Mel74. Yes I do.


I'm wondering if there is something wrong with my version of Office and/or Excel and Word and if I need to uninstall and reinstall.

That is a very good idea,
When was the last MacOS update?
You should consider upgrading to Office365, I do not have issue with 365
There is a Mac OS update that I need to do, but I was having these issues even when my OS was up to date.

I don't plan on upgrading to 365 since I don't want to pay for a subscription.