Circular Reference in Microsoft Excel

In this article, you will learn about Circular reference in Microsoft Excel. What is use of Circular reference?

What is Circular reference?

If we use Excel for any length of time to create the dashboards, templates, reporting format etc. in which we have to use formulas then possibility is to create a formula that results in a circular reference. It means that the formula you created includes the cell where the formula consist.

Let’s take an example and understand:-

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In the above shown image we have agent data. Below of the data we have summary for number of agent and average scored value. To calculate number of agent we have used COUNTA function and for average we have use Average function.

Now to know about the circular reference follow the steps below:-

  • Enter the formula in cell B2
  • =B7-SUM(B3:B6)

image 2


  • Press Enter on your keyboard

image 3

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Now to check the reason of showing the circular reference follow the steps below:-

  • Go to Formulas Tab.
  • In the group of Formula Auditing
  • Click on Error Checking
  • Click on Circular Reference

image 5


  • In the drop down list you can find the cell references

Conclusion: – When you are working in Excel sheet for templates and dashboard this problem is very common so it occur. This article will be helpful to rectify this kind of problem while working in Excel.

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