1. ## Cell Reference

I am examining an Excel '97 Spreadsheet that has the following: AVERAGE(B6:C159). It appears to give same results as AVERAGE (B6:b15,c6:c15,d6:d15). What exactly is AVERAGE (B6:C159) doing? Any help appreciated. Have checked Excel Help, but does not really help. Thanks.

2. ## Re: Cell Reference

Thomas,

I'd suspect that it's just trying to interpret an invalid range in the best way it can. In fact AVERAGE(B619) also gives the same result- and is more understandable. (Perhaps it was deliberately confusing because the person writing it wanted to keep it obscure so he was the only one who could decipher it?)

3. ## Re: Cell Reference

I believe Excel tries to determine from such references the lowest and highest row and column number (in your example, the columns are B and D, the rows are 6 and 15, and then evaluates the complete range within these limits/
So the formula AVERAGE(B6:C159) corresponds to AVERAGE(B616)

If you enter a formula

AVERAGE(D19:C2:A65) this will correspond to
AVERAGE(A265)
Of course, entering formula's this way is nonsense.

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