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Get first numeric value in a column or row

To retrieve the first numeric value from a one-column or one-row range, you can use a formula based on the INDEX, MATCH and ISNUMBER functions.

get first numeric value in a column or row 1

How to retrieve the first numeric value in a list?

To get the first numeric value in the list as shown above, the combination of INDEX, MATCH and ISNUMBER functions will help you in this way: The ISNUMBER function checks each value in the list if they are numbers or not. The MATCH function then performs an exact match to locate the position of the first numeric value. INDEX will then retrieve the value at that position.

Generic syntax

=INDEX(range,MATCH(TRUE,ISNUMBER(range),0))

√ Note: This is an array formula that requires you to enter with Ctrl + Shift + Enter.

  • range: The one-column or one-row range where to return the first numeric value from.

To retrieve the first numeric value in the list, please copy or enter the formula below in the cell E4, and press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to get the result:

=INDEX(B4:B15,MATCH(TRUE,ISNUMBER(B4:B15),0))

get first numeric value in a column or row 2

Explanation of the formula

=INDEX(B4:B15,MATCH(TRUE,ISNUMBER(B4:B15),0))

  • ISNUMBER(B4:B15): The ISNUMBER function evaluates each value in the range B4:B15. It will return a TRUE if a value is a number, a FALSE otherwise. So, it will generate an array like this: {FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;TRUE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;TRUE}.
  • MATCH(TRUE,ISNUMBER(B4:B15),0) = MATCH(TRUE,{FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;TRUE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;FALSE;TRUE},0): The match_type 0 forces the MATCH function to return the position of the first TRUE value in the array. So, the function will return 4.
  • INDEX(B4:B15,MATCH(TRUE,ISNUMBER(B4:B15),0)) = INDEX(B4:B15,4): The INDEX function then returns the 4th value of the range B4:B15, which is 99.

Related functions

Excel INDEX function

The Excel INDEX function returns the displayed value based on a given position from a range or an array.

Excel MATCH function

The Excel MATCH function searches for a specific value in a range of cells, and returns the relative position of the value.


Related Formulas

Get first text value in a row

To retrieve the first text value from a one-row range, a formula based on the HLOOKUP function would help you.

Retrieve nth match with INDEX

To find the nth match of a value from a range and retrieve its corresponding data, you can use a formula based on the INDEX, ROW, SMALL, and IF functions.

Find longest or shortest text string in a column or row

To look for the longest or shortest text string in a column or row in Excel, you can use the INDEX, MATCH, LEN and MAX or MIN functions together.

Find longest text string with criteria

In this tutorial, we will talk about how to look for the longest text string in a column or row with criteria in Excel with the help of INDEX, MATCH, LEN and MAX functions.


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