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# 7.1. Using Summation Functions

## Problem

You're performing calculations that require summations of large amounts of data (for example, for least-squares curve fitting) and would like to use built-in functions that make such summation computations easy.

## Solution

Use Excel's built-in summation functions such as `SUM`, `SUMSQ`, `SUMPRODUCT`, and `SUMX2MY2`.

## Discussion

Excel includes several built-in functions that make performing summations of large (or small) amounts of data very easy. Perhaps the most common sum function is `SUM`, which simply adds all values contained in a range of cells. For example, `=SUM(B2:B24)` adds all the values contained in cells B2 to B24. The range of cells does not have to be contiguous either. For example, `=SUM(B2:B24,C2:C24)` adds all the values contained in each cell range (you separate cell ranges with commas). You can even include explicit values like this `=SUM(B2:B24,1)`. In this case, the values contained in the range plus the specified value, 1, are added.

### Tip

Most of Excel's functions that take cell ranges or multiple values as arguments allow you to mix cell references and values, using commas as separators.

Table 7-1 contains a list with short descriptions of several of Excel's convenient summation functions.

Table 7-1. Common summation functions

Function

Syntax

Description

`SUM`

`=SUM(` `n1` `,` `n2` `,` `n3` `,` ...`)`

Returns the sum of all given numbers, which may include cell ranges and explicit numbers.

`SUMPRODUCT`

`=SUMPRODUCT(` `array1` `,` `array2` `,` ...`)`