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Excel Discover New Functions Using the fx Button

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Discover New Functions
Using the fx Button

Problem: There are hundreds of functions available in Excel. I know that I want to find a function to calculate a car payment, but I have no clue which function might do this.

Strategy: To find a function, you can click the Insert Function (fx) button. This button is always available to the left of the formula bar, and it appears 12 additional times in Excel 2007/2010, mostly on the Formulas tab. This figure shows three instances of the fx button. You can click this button to bring up the Insert Function dialog.

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Figure 285 Three of the 13 fx icons.

By default, the Insert Function dialog lists the most recently used functions. All of Excel’s functions are categorized into these categories: Financial, Date & Time, Math & Trig, Statistical, Lookup & Reference, Database, Text, Logical, Information, Cube, and Engineering. It can be difficult to correctly guess the category. SUM is a Math & Trig function, yet AVERAGE is a Statistical function. Rather than browse each category, you can type a few words in the search box and click Go. Excel will show you the relevant functions to choose from.

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Figure 286 Search for a function.

 

 

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