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Subtracting Dates

If you enter two dates in cells in a worksheet and then subtract them, the result is typically like this (american format, month/day.year):


The first shows the difference in days between the two days.  The second has had the difference accidently formatted as a date.

Excel stores dates as the number of days from the start of 1900.  So, May 3, 2014 is 41762 and Jan 1, 1988 is 32143. The difference is 9619.

To get the difference to look like the following,

right click on the date difference cell and select Format Cells, Number Tab, Custom Category and enter: y "years" m "months" d "days"

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