# The Excel SKEW.P Function

Related Function:
SKEW Function
Skewness

The Skew of a population is a measurement of the asymmetry of the distribution about the mean.

• A skew of zero indicates perfect symmetry;
• A positive skew indicates that more values lie below the mean;
• A negative skew indicates that more values lie above the mean.
 Positive Skew Negative Skew
For more information on skewness, see the Wikipedia Skewness page

## Function Description

The Excel SKEW.P function calculates the skewness of the distribution of a supplied set of values.

Note: the Skew.P function was only introduced in Excel 2013 and so is not available in earlier versions of Excel.

The syntax of the function is:

SKEW.P( number1, [number2], ... )

Where the number arguments provide a minimum of 3 values that make up the data set. These can be individual numbers or arrays of numbers.

## Skew.P Function Example

A B
1 1
2 1
3 2
4 2
5 2
6 2
7 3
8 3
9 3
10 4
11 4
12 5
13 6
14 7
15 8

Column A of the above spreadsheet on the right shows 15 data values. The distribution of these values is shown in the chart below:

The population skewness of the values in the spreadsheet can be calculated using the Excel Skew.P Function as follows:

=SKEW.P( A1:A15 )

This gives the result 0.774523929, indicating that the data set has a positive skew.

For further details and examples of the Excel Skew.P function, see the Microsoft Office website.

## Skew.P Function Errors

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

Common Errors
 #DIV/0! - Occurs if either: Fewer than 3 data values have been supplied to the function; The standard deviation of the data points is zero. #VALUE! - Occurs if any of the supplied number arguments that are supplied directly to the function are not recognised as numeric values. (Note that if the Skew.P function is provided with a reference to a range of cells, any text values within this cell range are simply ignored and do not cause the function to return an error).