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Article ID: 324991 - Last Review: February 2, 2012 - Revision: 8.0

This article was previously published under Q324991

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This article describes how to use the OFFSET function to return the value of a cell that is a specified number of rows and columns away from a cell or range of cells that you referenced in an adjacent range.


Enter the following data into a blank Excel worksheet. You will use this data for all sample formulas in this article.
Collapse this tableExpand this table
A1: NameB1: DeptC1: Age
A2: HenryB2: 501C2: 28
A3: StanB3: 201C3: 19
A4: MaryB4: 101C4: 22
A5: LarryB5: 301C5: 29

Enter the following formulas into cell E2 (or any available blank cell):
  • C2 - The referenced cell.
  • 2 - Indicates the number of rows to move. Positive numbers mean move down, and negative numbers mean move up.
  • -1 - Indicates the number of columns to move. Positive numbers mean move to the right, and negative numbers mean move to the left.
  • 1 (second last value) - (Optional.) Indicates how many rows of data to return. This number must be a positive number.
  • 1 (last value) - (Optional.) Indicates how many columns of data to return. This number must be a positive number.


When you use this formula, the OFFSET function returns the value of the cell that is located two rows down (2) and 1 row to the left (-1) of cell C2 (which is cell B4). The value in cell B4 is "101". Therefore, the formula returns "101".

  • Microsoft Office Excel 2003
  • Microsoft Office Excel 2007
  • Microsoft Excel 2010
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