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Calculate running total (cumulative sum) in Excel

A running total is also called cumulative sum, which can be used as a metric that tells you what’s the sum of the values so far. In this tutorial, you will learn a simple formula to calculate running total in Excel.

How to calculate running total in Excel?

Assuming you have a list of date sales data as shown below, calculating the running total tells you what the sales volume was from the first date to a particular date. You can apply the SUM function to easily solve the problem.

Generic Formulas



A$1: Represents the first cell in the list where you want to calculate the running total. Displays as a row absolute reference.
A1: Represents the first cell in the list where you want to calculate the running total. Displays as a relative reference.

How to use this formula?

1. Select a cell next to the first value in the list.

2. Enter the below formula into it and press Enter key. Select the result cell, drag its AutoFill Handle down to get all running totals in the list.


Tip: In the formula, clicking the cell reference and then striking the F4 key multiple times helps toggling the absolute and relative references.

Explanation of this formula


> The SUM function uses a mixed reference which includes both absolute and relative references to create an expanding range.
> D$3 – the dollar sign placed before the number means that it has locked the row and this reference will not change when the formula is copied down.

Related functions

Excel SUM function
The Excel SUM function adds values.

Related formulas

3D sum or sumif across multiple worksheets
This tutorial talks about how to sum the same range of cells across multiple consecutive or discontiguous worksheets in Excel.

Get subtotal by invoice number
This tutorial explains a formula based on the COUNTIF and SUMIF functions to get subtotal by invoice number in Excel.

Subtotal by colors
This step-by-step guide helps you perform subtotal by color with the SUMIF function.

Two-way summary counting
In this tutorial, we will discuss how to use the COUNTIFS function to create two-way summary count in Excel.

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