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: Returning an ANSI Value.

Returning an ANSI Value

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 6, 2013)

You may have a need to determine the ANSI value of the text in a particular cell. You can do this using the CODE worksheet function. This function returns a numeric value that represents the ANSI value of the first letter in the referenced cell. For instance, if cell A1 contains the text "My Stuff," and that B1 contains the following:


In this instance, B1 will have a result of 77, which is the ANSI value of M, the first character in A1.

If the value in the referenced cell is numeric (such as 34 or 2798), then the CODE function treats the numeric value as if it were text and returns the ANSI value of the first digit in the value. Thus, if A1 contained 34, then CODE would return 51, which is the ANSI value of "3."

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2153) 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: Returning an ANSI Value.

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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