Excel gives you the option to format negative numbers to display in red rather than displaying the negative sign beside the number.
Displaying negative numbers in a different color can make it easier to find them - especially if they are the results of formulas which may be difficult to track in a large spreadsheet.
Example: Format a Negative Number in Excel
For help with this example, see the image above.
- Enter the following data into cells D1 to D6: -40, 20, -30, 60, -5, 25.
- Drag select cells D1 to D6 to highlight them.
- Click on the Home tab of the ribbon.
- Click on the down arrow next in the Number section of the ribbon to open the Format Cells dialog box.
- Click on Number under the Category section of the dialog box.
- Set the number of decimal places to zero in the right hand side of the dialog box.
- Choose the red number (1234) option in the Negative numbers section of the dialog box.
- Click OK.
- The data in cells D1, D3, and D5 should now be red in color and without negative signs.