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How to use the YEAR function in Microsoft Excel

Let's look at some Excel Year function examples and explore how to use the Year function as a worksheet function in Microsoft Excel:

YEAR function


The Excel YEAR function returns the year of a date as a 4-digit number.
You can use the YEAR function to extract a year number from a date into a cell or to extract and feed a year value into another formula, like the DATE function.
The YEAR function is a built-in function in Excel that is categorized as a Date/Time Function.


Get the year as a number from a date.

Return value

Year as 4-digit number.

What Does It Do ?

This function extracts the year number from a date.


Year function has three syntax and hence they can be written in Three different ways:

=YEAR(serial_number) or
=YEAR(“date”) or
=YEAR(cell reference)

Parameters or Arguments

Serial_number: A valid date as per the excel date serial numbers.
Date: The date of the year you are trying to find.
Cell reference: Reference to cells containing dates.


The result is shown as a number.

Usage notes

The YEAR function extracts the year from a given date as a 4-digit number. For example:

=YEAR("15-Jun-2011") || Result: 2011

With the date October 01, 2000 in cell B5:

=YEAR(B5) || Result: 2000

You can use the YEAR function to extract a year from a date into a cell, or to feed a year into another function like the DATE function.

Note: dates are serial numbers in Excel, and begin on January 1, 1900. Dates before 1900 are not supported. To display date values in a human-readable date format, apply a the number format of your choice.


  • Date must be a valid Excel date.
  • For the YEAR function to work correctly, a date should be entered by using the DATE(year, month, day) function.
  • If you attempt to input dates as text, there is a risk that Excel may misinterpret them, due to different date systems, or date interpretation settings on your computer.
  • The input date must be a valid Excel date. The dates in Excel are stored as serial numbers. For example, the date Jan 1, 2010, is equal to the serial number 40179 in Excel. YEAR Function in Excel takes as input both the date directly or the serial number of the date. It is to be noted here that Excel does not recognize dates earlier than 1/1/1900.
  • If you mention an invalid date it will return #VALUE! error.
  • If you skip entering any value in serial_number it will return 0.

Excel Year Function Examples

The following spreadsheet shows two simple examples of the Excel Year function:

YEAR Function

The above examples show that each argument to the Year function can be supplied as a single value or cell reference, or as an array of values or cells.

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