sign and exponent odditity ... sign and exponent odditity ... rb1957 (Aerospace) (OP) 14 Feb 14 10:42 was just doing a equation that started with "number^4..." then i needed to change the sign ... easy enough "-number^4". got a positive answer ... excel interprets -number^4 as (-number)^4 ... had to use "-1*number^4" Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati RE: sign and exponent odditity ... stevenal (Electrical) 14 Feb 14 11:07 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Order_of_operations#T... RE: sign and exponent odditity ... AELLC (Structural) 14 Feb 14 11:44 That is very tricky- =-2^4 returns 16 However, =12-2^4 returns -4 (go figure) RE: sign and exponent odditity ... IRstuff (Aerospace) 14 Feb 14 17:44 This has been discussed before, I think, but here is the official answer: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/excel-help/calcu... Excel distinguishes between a subtraction operator vs. a negation operator, as it should. A minus sign without a preceding value must be a negation, which has higher priority than exponentiation. TTFN FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies Need help writing a question or understanding a reply? forum1529: Translation Assistance for Engineers RE: sign and exponent odditity ... IDS (Civil/Environmental) 14 Feb 14 19:16 -(4^2) will return -16. Doug Jenkins Interactive Design Services http://newtonexcelbach.wordpress.com/ RE: sign and exponent odditity ... stevenal (Electrical) 18 Feb 14 11:46 Quote (IRstuff)Excel distinguishes between a subtraction operator vs. a negation operator, as it should. A minus sign without a preceding value must be a negation, which has higher priority than exponentiation. I find it much simpler to consider the negation operation to be a subtraction from zero operation, with the zero implied. Same symbol should carry the same order of operation. Microsoft is the exception here. Mathcad for example will perform the exponention first in this calculation. When in doubt, insert brackets.