The Excel PERCENTILE Function

Related Function:
QUARTILE
PERCENTILE & PERCENTILE.INC Functions

In Excel 2010, the PERCENTILE function has been renamed the PERCENTILE.INC function.

Although it has been replaced, the Percentile function is still available in current versions of Excel (stored in the list of compatibility functions), to allow compatibility with earlier versions of Excel.

Basic Description

The Excel Percentile function returns the k'th percentile (i.e. the value below which k% of the data values fall) for a supplied range of values and a supplied k.

The syntax of the function is:

PERCENTILE( array, k )

Where the function arguments are:

array-The array of data values for which you want to calculate the k'th percentile.
k-The value (between 0 and 1) of the required percentile.


Percentile Function Examples

Column B of the spreadsheet below shows four examples of the Excel Percentile function, used to calculate the k'th percentile of the set of values in cells A1-A6. In each case, a different value of k is specified.

 Formulas:
 AB
12=PERCENTILE( A1:A6, 0.2 )
21=PERCENTILE( A1:A6, 60% )
36=PERCENTILE( A1:A6, 50% )
44=PERCENTILE( A1:A6, 95% )
53 
65 
 Results:
 AB
122
214
363.5
445.75
53 
65 

Note that in the above examples:

See the Microsoft Office website for further examples of the Excel Percentile function.


Percentile Function Errors

If you get an error from the Excel Percentile function this is likely to be one of the following:

Common Errors
#NUM!-

Occurs if either:

  • The supplied value of k is less than 0 or greater than 1.
or
  • The supplied array is empty.
#VALUE!-Occurs if the supplied value of k is non-numeric.