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CEILING Function

The CEILING function rounds a number up to the nearest multiple of significance.

by Charley Kyd, MBA
Microsoft Excel MVP, 2005-2014
The Father of Spreadsheet Dashboard Reports


CEILING(number, significance)

  • number  Required. The value you want to round.
  • significance  Required. The multiple to which you want to round.

Applies To

Excel 2003 and above

A Note About "Rounding"

In Excel, numbers can "round" in two ways.

First, they can round up or down. With this type of rounding, numbers get larger when they are rounded up, and smaller when they are rounded down.

Second, numbers can round towards zero or away from zero. When positive numbers are rounded towards zero, they get smaller; when negative numbers are rounded towards zero, they get larger.

Although Microsoft uses "round up" and "round down" to describe both types of rounding, we use "round up" or "round down" to describe the first type of rounding. And we use "round towards zero" or "round away from zero" to describe the second type.


  • To avoid errors, both arguments must be numeric.
  • If number is positive and significance is negative, CEILING returns an error value.


You can download this example workbook here, along with all other example workbooks I've completed for this Excel help area.

Rounds both positive and negative numbers up. A Significance value of 1 rounds the number up to the nearest integer.

To illustrate how CEILING works, examples 3b and 4b show how INT can produce the same results as CEILING in 3a and 4a, respectively.

INT and CEILING can produce the same results even when the significance value is not an integer.

In 8a, CEILING returns an error value if the number is positive and Significance is negative. But the other combinations calculate successfully.

Other ExcelUser Information

Other Help

Related Functions

In total, Excel 2013 offers 15 functions that round data in various ways. Here's a summary of Excel's rounding functions.


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