# A to Z of Excel Functions: The PRODUCT Function

11 March 2024

*Welcome
back to our regular A to Z of Excel Functions blog. Today we look at the PRODUCT function. *

** **

**The
PRODUCT function**

The **PRODUCT** function multiplies all the
numbers given as arguments and returns the product. For example, if cells **A1** and **A2** numbers, you can use the formula **=PRODUCT(A1, A2)** to multiply
those two numbers together. You can also
perform the same operation by using the multiply (*****) mathematical
operator; for example, **=A1 * A2**.

The **PRODUCT** function is useful when you need
to multiply many cells together. For
example, the formula **=PRODUCT(A1:A9, C1:C9)** is equivalent to

=**A1 * A2 * A3 * A4 * A5
* A6 * A7 * A8 * A9 * C1 * C2 * C3 * C4 * C5 * C6 * C7 * C8 * C9.**

The **PRODUCT **function
uses the following syntax to operate:

**PRODUCT(number1[, number2, …])**

The **PRODUCT **function
has the following arguments:

**number1:**this is required and represents the first number or range you wish to multiply**number2, …:**this argument is optional and represents the additional number(s) or range(s) you want to multiply, up to a maximum of 255 arguments.

It should be noted that if an argument is an array or reference, only numbers in the array or reference are multiplied. Empty cells, logical values, and text in the array or reference will be ignored.

**PRODUCT **is often used in financial modelling. Consider the following example:

In this illustration, you might not understand
what the **MOD** function does, but hopefully, you can
follow each of the flags in rows 4 to 7 without being an Excel guru. Row 9, the product, simply multiplies all of
the flags together (using the **PRODUCT** function allows you to add additional conditions / rows easily). This effectively produces a sophisticated **AND** flag, where all of the formulae are
mercifully short.

Some might wonder why I use **PRODUCT** rather than **MIN **here. I confess it is partly a preference and
partly the fact that if you are modelling optimisation problems, **MIN** can give rise to non-smooth outputs
(not a good thing) whereas **PRODUCT** does not.

*We’ll
continue our A to Z of Excel Functions soon.
Keep checking back – there’s a new blog post every other business day.*

*A
full page of the function articles can be found here. *