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: Determining Business Quarters from Dates.

# Determining Business Quarters from Dates

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated March 18, 2021)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003

Robert is looking for a way to determine the business quarter in which a particular date falls. For example, if cell A1 has 2/15/08, he would want cell B1 to contain a formula that returned Q1-08. Similarly, if cell A1 has 8/1/07, he would want cell B1 to return Q3-07.

There are literally dozens of ways that you can determine a straight business quarter from a date. A few of these methods are worth examining, and they are easily modified to adapt to any specific needs. What is assumed here is that you really want to use a self-contained formula, rather than using a lookup table or a VBA macro. Both of those approaches will work just fine, but it is assumed that the simple formulas will work best for your purposes.

The key factor in determining the business quarter is to look at the month of the date. One way to do that examination is to use a formula that relies on the CHOOSE function. Consider the following:

```=CHOOSE(MONTH(A1),"Q1","Q1","Q1","Q2","Q2",
"Q2","Q3","Q3","Q3","Q4","Q4","Q4") & "-"
& RIGHT(YEAR(A1),2)
```

This is a single formula; it is rather long, providing a choice for each of the 12 months in the year. Each month returns the quarter portion of the result, and then the text for the year is appended.

Another way is to rely on IF statements to determine the quarter. This is done in the following manner:

```=IF(MONTH(A1)<=3,"Q1",IF(MONTH(A1)<=6,"Q2",
IF(MONTH(A1)<=9,"Q3","Q4")))&"-"&TEXT(A1,"yy")
```

The IF statements check the month to see its relation to the various boundaries for the quarters (3, 6, and 9) and then assigns a proper quarter (Q1, Q2, Q3, or Q4) based on the result. A dash and the last two digits of the year is then appended to the quarter.

You can make the formula even shorter by calculating the quarter directly based upon the month. For instance, the following will take the month and return a value of 1 to 4 based on the month:

```=INT((MONTH(A1)-1)/3)+1
```

This formula can be incorporated into a larger formula in this way:

```="Q" & INT((MONTH(A1)-1)/3)+1 & "-" & RIGHT(YEAR(A1),2)
```

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3339) 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: Determining Business Quarters from Dates.

##### 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. ...

##### MORE FROM ALLEN

Inserting Large Numbers of Checkboxes

Excel provides a number of tools you can use to help create forms. One of those tools is a checkbox. If you need to place ...

Discover More

Positioning a Graphic in a Macro

Macros are a great way to process information in a worksheet. Part of that processing may involve moving graphics around ...

Discover More

Creating Multiple Blank Documents in One Step

Word makes it easy to create a new, blank document. What if you want to create more than one document at a time, however? ...

Discover More

Save Time and Supercharge Excel! Automate virtually any routine task and save yourself hours, days, maybe even weeks. Then, learn how to make Excel do things you thought were simply impossible! Mastering advanced Excel macros has never been easier. Check out Excel 2010 VBA and Macros today!

Understanding Operators

At the heart of working with Excel is the process of creating formulas that calculate results based on information within ...

Discover More

Determining a Simple Moving Average

A moving average can be a great way to analyze a series of data points that you've collected over time. Setting up a ...

Discover More

Number of Terms in a Formula

Formulas are made up of operands that separate a series of terms acted upon by the operands. You may want to know, for ...

Discover More
##### Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is eight more than 7?

2018-01-23 15:21:45

Willy Vanhaelen

Here is a much shorter alternative for the first formula:

="Q"&MID("111222333444",MONTH(A1),1)&TEXT(A1,"-yy")

2017-05-30 06:27:13

Michael (Micky) Avidan

Meaning: =INT((MONTH(A1)+2)/3)

2017-05-30 06:25:14

Michael (Micky) Avidan

You may want to add, to the list, the shortest formula known (to me) so far:
=INT((MONTH(C2)+2)/3)
--------------------------
Michael (Micky) Avidan
“Microsoft® Answers" - Wiki author & Forums Moderator
“Microsoft®” Excel MVP – Excel (2009-2017)
ISRAEL

##### This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.