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Default Formatting for PivotTables

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

James is frustrated when it comes to formatting PivotTables. He would like all PivotTables to start in the classic format with no subtotals and repeated row items with all values in accounting format with no currency sign and no characters after the decimal. Being able to set a default such as this would save James a huge amount of time. He wonders about the easiest way to set default formatting for PivotTables so that he can avoid going through the repetitive process of formatting each new PivotTable.

Unfortunately, there is no way to create a default format for your PivotTables that we've been able to discover. One thing you might try is to develop a macro that does the formatting for you—start by recording the process of formatting your PivotTable, and then adjust the macro so that it is more global and can apply to almost any PivotTable you create. (This process can be a bit intimidating, but it can be done.)

Another idea is to create a workbook with the PivotTable formatted as desired and then save that workbook as read-only. Then, when you need to do some work using that format of PivotTable, you can open the workbook, save it under a different name, and modify the data used to make up the PivotTable, as desired.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (11262) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Default Formatting for PivotTables.

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