Free Microsoft Excel 2013 Quick Reference

# Formula Doesn’t Work When Workbook Opens

I have defined the name “NAV” for the following formula:
=INDIRECT("NAV" & INT((COLUMN() -1) / 14) + 1 - (COLUMN() = 141))
and it works just fine. That’s not my problem.

I have a worksheet with 10 embedded charts lined up horizontally on the sheet. There are some formulas below each chart that provide data related to the chart above it. These formulas are the same for each chart. Under each chart I have a cell with the defined name “NAVx”, where “x” is one of the numbers 1 through 10 corresponding to the chart above it. So I have a series of cells names NAV1, NAV2, NAV3, etc. each containing todays stock price for the chart above it.

To simplify writing the formulas for each chart, whenever I would normally use the name of one of the “NAVx” cells I use the name “NAV” (not “NAV1”, “NAV2”, etc.). The formula with the defined name “NAV” knows how to compute which chart it is referring to by knowing its column position on the sheet. Knowing the column position, it can then append the suffix 1, 2, 3, etc.as appropriate to the literal “NAV” to create the cell name “NAV1”, “NAV2”, “NAV3”, (whichever is appropriate). It then is used in the formula to extract the value of the price cell and substitute it into the formula that referenced “NAV”.

For example, if I wanted to compute the current value of the stock knowing that 8000 shares are owned, I can write the formula:
= 8000 * NAV
After the substitution, the formula becomes:
= 8000 * INDIRECT("NAV" & INT((COLUMN() -1) / 14) + 1 - (COLUMN() = 141))

Here’s my problem. At times when I open the workbook, wherever I’ve used the defined name “NAV” I get a #NAME? error. I can make the error go away by doing the following sequence:
1. Select the cell containing the defined name “NAV”, which make the cell’s formula show in the formula bar.
2. Click my cursor to the left of the formula in the formula bar. This causes a green arrow to appear to the left of the formula bar.
3. Click on the green arrow.
When I click on the green arrow, the formula executes properly, the #NAME? error goes away, and the formula value appears on the worksheet as it’s supposed to do. I have no idea what clicking on the green arrow does, but it clears the problem until the next time I open the workbook.

I never know when I open this workbook whether or not I’m going to get the #NAME? error…sometimes it works perfectly and sometimes it doesn’t. I have had a similar problem in another workbook with a different defined name, so I don’t think it’s the name. I KNOW the formula works, so that’s not likely to be the problem. I have used this technique with about 6 to 10 named formulas that never give me a problem, so why does this particular one fail??

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