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Ignoring zero in IF formula

Hi all,

I'm a novice in Excel so go easy on me, but this little thing has me pulling out my hair!

I'm creating a scatter chart using error bars to draw between the scatter markers, so I need to take my (simple) data and create a positive or negative error value to determine the length of the line:

Positive

=IF(A3-A2>0,(A3-A2),0)

Negative

=IF(A3-A2<0,ABS(A3-A2),0)

The problem I have is that I don't want any error bars when 'A3' equals exactly 0. The positive formula is fine, but the negative one, of course, will still return a value (0 - 'A2').

I've tried a bunch of different "AND" and "NOT" things, and other nested IF statements, but I'm clearly missing something pretty simple here!

So, basically, is there a way of saying:

If (A3-A2)<0, return the absolute value of (A3-A2), otherwise return 0, UNLESS A3 is exactly 0, in which case always return 0?

5 Replies
best response confirmed by joeexception (New Contributor)
Solution

Re: Ignoring zero in IF formula

For example

=IF(A3=0,0,IF(A3-A2<0,ABS(A3-A2),0))

or

=IF(OR(A3=0,A3-A2>=0),0,ABS(A3-A2))

Re: Ignoring zero in IF formula

@joeexception You're a novice. I'm not a clairvoyant but perhaps theses will do what want:

Positive: =IF(A3=0,0,IF(A3-A2>0,(A3-A2),0))

Negative: =IF(A3=0,0,IF(A3-A2<0,ABS(A3-A2),0))

Or perhaps you can combine both into one:

=IF(A3=0,0,IF(A3-A2>0,(A3-A2),ABS(A3-A2)))

Ooops: Didn't see the first response until I posted mine.

Re: Ignoring zero in IF formula

Outstanding! Thanks for your quick help Hans!
I just couldn't work out the order things needed to go in - knew there was something really simple I was missing.

Re: Ignoring zero in IF formula

Thanks Riny - Hans got in just before you
Too many clever boffins on this site

Re: Ignoring zero in IF formula

As variant

``=MAX(A2-A3,0)*(A3<>0)``

for negative