# Excel Formula: Find most recent date in cell

I have a lot of dates in cell A1. (i.e. 1/1/1900, 2/4/1978, 8/21/2005 etc.) What formula or macro could I use so that it will find the most recent date in cell A1.
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Commented:
"A lot of dates in cell A1"??? You can have a lot of dates on column A, on cell A1 you can have only ONE date, right?

If the date values are in column A, you can use this formula:

=MAX(A2:A5,1)

Don't forget to format the cell where you put the formula to Date.

jppinto
0
Commented:
could You just use sort recent to old?
0
Commented:
Assuming you mean that all of those dates are in A1, I added the code below from my article http://www.experts-exchange.com/articles/Programming/Languages/Visual_Basic/Using-Regular-Expressions-in-Visual-Basic-for-Applications-and-Visual-Basic-6.html

I then used this array formula:

{=MAX(DATEVALUE(RegExpFind(A1,"\d\d?/\d\d?/\d{4}")))}

Enter that without the curly braces, but hit Ctrl+Shift+Enter instead of just Enter to finish it off. Excel will then display the braces to indicate it is an array formula.

``````Function RegExpFind(LookIn As String, PatternStr As String, Optional Pos, _
Optional MatchCase As Boolean = True, Optional ReturnType As Long = 0, _
Optional MultiLine As Boolean = False)

' Function written by Patrick G. Matthews.  You may use and distribute this code freely,
' as long as you properly credit and attribute authorship and the URL of where you
' found the code

' http://www.experts-exchange.com/articles/Programming/Languages/Visual_Basic/Using-Regular-Expressions-in-Visual-Basic-for-Applications-and-Visual-Basic-6.html

' This function relies on the VBScript version of Regular Expressions, and thus some of
' the functionality available in Perl and/or .Net may not be available.  The full extent
' of what functionality will be available on any given computer is based on which version
' of the VBScript runtime is installed on that computer

' This function uses Regular Expressions to parse a string (LookIn), and return matches to a
' pattern (PatternStr).  Use Pos to indicate which match you want:
' Pos omitted               : function returns a zero-based array of all matches
' Pos = 1                   : the first match
' Pos = 2                   : the second match
' Pos = <positive integer>  : the Nth match
' Pos = 0                   : the last match
' Pos = -1                  : the last match
' Pos = -2                  : the 2nd to last match
' Pos = <negative integer>  : the Nth to last match
' If Pos is non-numeric, or if the absolute value of Pos is greater than the number of
' matches, the function returns an empty string.  If no match is found, the function returns
' an empty string.  (Earlier versions of this code used zero for the last match; this is
' retained for backward compatibility)

' If MatchCase is omitted or True (default for RegExp) then the Pattern must match case (and
' thus you may have to use [a-zA-Z] instead of just [a-z] or [A-Z]).

' ReturnType indicates what information you want to return:
' ReturnType = 0            : the matched values
' ReturnType = 1            : the starting character positions for the matched values
' ReturnType = 2            : the lengths of the matched values

' If you use this function in Excel, you can use range references for any of the arguments.
' If you use this in Excel and return the full array, make sure to set up the formula as an
' array formula.  If you need the array formula to go down a column, use TRANSPOSE()

' Note: RegExp counts the character positions for the Match.FirstIndex property as starting
' at zero.  Since VB6 and VBA has strings starting at position 1, I have added one to make
' the character positions conform to VBA/VB6 expectations

' Normally as an object variable I would set the RegX variable to Nothing; however, in cases
' where a large number of calls to this function are made, making RegX a static variable that
' preserves its state in between calls significantly improves performance

Static RegX As Object
Dim TheMatches As Object
Dim Counter As Long

' Evaluate Pos.  If it is there, it must be numeric and converted to Long

If Not IsMissing(Pos) Then
If Not IsNumeric(Pos) Then
RegExpFind = ""
Exit Function
Else
Pos = CLng(Pos)
End If
End If

' Evaluate ReturnType

If ReturnType < 0 Or ReturnType > 2 Then
RegExpFind = ""
Exit Function
End If

' Create instance of RegExp object if needed, and set properties

If RegX Is Nothing Then Set RegX = CreateObject("VBScript.RegExp")
With RegX
.Pattern = PatternStr
.Global = True
.IgnoreCase = Not MatchCase
.MultiLine = MultiLine
End With

' Test to see if there are any matches

If RegX.Test(LookIn) Then

' Run RegExp to get the matches, which are returned as a zero-based collection

Set TheMatches = RegX.Execute(LookIn)

' Test to see if Pos is negative, which indicates the user wants the Nth to last
' match.  If it is, then based on the number of matches convert Pos to a positive
' number, or zero for the last match

If Not IsMissing(Pos) Then
If Pos < 0 Then
If Pos = -1 Then
Pos = 0
Else

' If Abs(Pos) > number of matches, then the Nth to last match does not
' exist.  Return a zero-length string

If Abs(Pos) <= TheMatches.Count Then
Pos = TheMatches.Count + Pos + 1
Else
RegExpFind = ""
GoTo Cleanup
End If
End If
End If
End If

' If Pos is missing, user wants array of all matches.  Build it and assign it as the
' function's return value

If IsMissing(Pos) Then
ReDim Answer(0 To TheMatches.Count - 1)
For Counter = 0 To UBound(Answer)
Select Case ReturnType
Case 1: Answer(Counter) = TheMatches(Counter).FirstIndex + 1
End Select
Next

' User wanted the Nth match (or last match, if Pos = 0).  Get the Nth value, if possible

Else
Select Case Pos
Case 0                          ' Last match
Select Case ReturnType
Case 0: RegExpFind = TheMatches(TheMatches.Count - 1)
Case 1: RegExpFind = TheMatches(TheMatches.Count - 1).FirstIndex + 1
Case 2: RegExpFind = TheMatches(TheMatches.Count - 1).Length
End Select
Case 1 To TheMatches.Count      ' Nth match
Select Case ReturnType
Case 0: RegExpFind = TheMatches(Pos - 1)
Case 1: RegExpFind = TheMatches(Pos - 1).FirstIndex + 1
Case 2: RegExpFind = TheMatches(Pos - 1).Length
End Select
Case Else                       ' Invalid item number
RegExpFind = ""
End Select
End If

' If there are no matches, return empty string

Else
RegExpFind = ""
End If

Cleanup:
' Release object variables

Set TheMatches = Nothing

End Function
``````
Q-25757678.xls
0

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Commented:
ouestque,

We'd appreciate a little feedback on our suggestions so far.  I notice that you have had enough time to ask additional questions, so I'm not sure what you're waiting for :)

Patrick
0
Commented:
It's not clear if the asker has lots of date on the same cell or if he has lots of dates on the same column...

If he has lots of dates on the same cell, then Patrick's solution is OK;
If he has lots of dates on the same column, then my example is the right answer!

You cannot assume only one of the solutions without knowing what is the right question! In this case, I propose a split, if the asker doesn't explain what he means!

jppinto
0
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