The Excel CEILING function is a Math formula that rounds a given number up to the nearest multiple of significance. This function is the predecessor of the CEILING.MATH function which was released in Excel 2013. In this guide, we’re going to show you how to use the CEILING function and also go over some tips and error handling methods.

Supported versions

  • All Excel versions

Excel CEILING Function Syntax




The number you want to round up.


The multiple to which you want to round the number.


Positive numbers

If the number argument is positive, the value is rounded up, away from zero (0). In this case, the significance should also be a positive number.

=CEILING(12.85,0.04) returns 12.88

Negative numbers

If the number argument is negative, the rounding direction is going to be determined by whether the significance is positive. If the significance value is positive, the function rounds the number up, towards zero (0). Otherwise, the number will be rounded away from zero.

=CEILING(-23.254,0.04) returns -23.24

=CEILING(-23.254,-0.04) returns -23.28

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Summary and Tips

  • Microsoft has released the MATH function to replace the CEILING function. The support for CEILING function continues for the sake of backwards compatibility.
  • The FLOOR function acts as the opposite of this function. However, we recommend using the MATH function instead to round down to the nearest multiple.
  • If you need to round to the nearest multiple, use MROUND.
  • Use an integer as significance to round number down to an integer.


  • The function returns #NUM! error if number is positive, but significant is negative.