How to Find the Last Number in a Column Using Excel

by Stephanie Ellen

Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet application that enables you to sort and classify massive amounts of data. Because of the large amount of data a spreadsheet can hold, finding the last number in a column without a formula might require you to scroll through hundred of pages. However, one of Microsoft's built-in formulas allows you to find the last number in a column with the push of a button.

1

Select the cell you would like Excel to output the data into. For example, if the column of interest is A1 to A1000, you might want to output the answer in cell B1.

2

Enter the following formula into the cell from Step 1: =LOOKUP(9.999999999E+307,celln:celln). Replace celln:celln with your range. For example, if you want Excel to find the last number in the A column from cells A1 to A1000, enter =LOOKUP(9.999999999E+307,A1:A1000).

3

Press enter. Excel will display the value in the last cell you specified in Step 2.

Tip

  • check If you are unsure of the last cell in the column, make a large range. For example, if you think you might have a few hundred cells, ask Excel to look at 65,000 cells (the maximum number of cells in a column in Excel 2003) by specifying A1:65000 as the range.

About the Author

Stephanie Ellen teaches mathematics and statistics at the university and college level. She coauthored a statistics textbook published by Houghton-Mifflin. She has been writing professionally since 2008. Ellen holds a Bachelor of Science in health science from State University New York, a master's degree in math education from Jacksonville University and a Master of Arts in creative writing from National University.