Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Formatting Currency.

Formatting Currency

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated October 31, 2020)
This tip applies to Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


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Those who are familiar with the rich formatting features of Excel may long for a way to format numbers in a Word table just as easily. For instance, you may have a column of numbers that you want to format as currency, complete with the dollar sign. Unfortunately, Word does not allow you to do this type of formatting directly.

There is a work-around, however. You can use a field to insert any number you want in any format you want. For instance, let's say you have the number 65.78, and you want it formatted as currency in a particular table cell. All you need to do is follow these steps:

  1. Position the insertion point in the table cell where the number will reside.
  2. Press Ctrl+F9 to insert a pair of field braces.
  3. Type the equal sign, followed by the number (65.78).
  4. Type a space, followed by \# and another space. This switch tells Word that you are about to specify the format for the number.
  5. Enter the format specification, in quote marks. In this case, you would enter "$#,###.00".
  6. Press Shift+F9 to collapse the completed field.

You can continue to insert numbers in this way. If you have quite a few of them, you may want to create a macro to automate the process. Entering numbers in this way will not affect your ability to create column totals, as well.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1773) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Formatting Currency.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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What is five less than 5?

2022-10-09 09:29:08

yiming

correction on the previous comment:
for step 3, DON'T key in the parentheses, unless it is a negative number.


2022-10-09 09:17:20

yiming

This will work:

- for step 3, key in the number (65.78), complete with *parentheses*.
- after step 6, right-click in the cell and select update field.


2021-10-05 15:40:56

Matt Smith

Also couldn't get this to work, and, TBH, it's far quicker and easier to just add currency symbols/commas/decimals manually or copy the already formatted table over from excel.
I'm now questioning why I bothered looking this up, or why it was written, but there you go, life's a journey.


2021-03-02 19:24:25

Naive Bae

I cannot get this to work. I follow the instructions indicated and when I hit Shift+F9 at the end, the cell displays as completely empty with a blinking cursor. I tried substituting with the number given in the example above, and it didn't work either.


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