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  1. #1
    3 Star Lounger
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    positive numbers to show plus sign (XP 2003)

    I am sending letters to students to tell them how many hours they have to make up in work experience before their course ends. I want hours owed to show up as negative numbers with a minus sign, and this works fine. I also want surplus hours, in excess of requirement, to show up as positive numbers with a plus sign, but don't know how to format cells to do this. Also, when using excel as the data source for a word mail merge letter, for the plus and minus signs to show up in the word field. Any help much appreciated. Frank.

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: positive numbers to show plus sign (XP 2003)

    Select the cells.
    Select Format | Cells...
    In the Number tab, select Custom in the list of Categories.
    Enter the custom format <code>+0;-0;0</code> in the Type box.
    Click OK.

    For mail merge, you have two options in Word:

    One option is to add a format switch to the merge fields:
    - Right-click a merge field.
    - Select Toggle Field Codes from the popup menu.
    - Insert the following before the closing brace } but after the merge field name.
    <code>
    # "+0;-0;0"
    </code>
    - Press F9 to hide the field code and to update the field.

    Another method:
    - In Word, select Tools | Options...
    - Activate the General tab.
    - Tick the "Confirm conversion at Open" check box.
    - Click OK.
    - Go back to step 3 of the mail merge wizard (task pane).
    - Click "Select a different list".
    - Locate your workbook again.
    - This time, you'll be prompted for a method to connect to the workbook.
    - Select "MS Excel worksheets via DDE (*.xls)", then click OK.
    - Continue as usual.
    The merge should now preserve the number formatting from Excel.

  3. #3
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    Re: positive numbers to show plus sign (XP 2003)

    Thanks Hans for a quick answer, I am sure it will work perfectly.
    Frank

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