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I seem to be having a problem with conditional formatting in Excel 2010. I have a set of date points, percentages between 1 and 100. I applied three rules in the following order,

  1. if greater than 75% apply formatting 1
  2. if greater than 80% apply formatting 2
  3. if greater than 85% apply formatting 3

I have not checked "Stop if true" for any of the rules. Yet only the first two rules are applied. I can change the order by promoting rule 3 to rule 1 and then all the rules are applied, but I don't see what is wrong with the current order.

A minimal working example can be found here:

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It's to do with precedence of rules. Rules higher in the list take precedence over those lower down the list. See here:

When rules conflict: For example, one rule sets a cell font color to red and another rule sets a cell font color to green. Because the two rules are in conflict, only one can apply. The rule that is applied is the one that is higher in precedence.

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Thanks Rhys. Although I seem to be having problem even when the rules are not conflicting. For example if I set format 2 to embolden the text and format 3 to apply background fill, format 3 still does not apply. – Adam Jul 15 '12 at 20:58

Rhys' answer is correct: precedence is being applied.

The reason you are not seeing what you expect is that the formating you have applied to your rules is not what you think it is. For example Rule 2 has background set to "no fill", which is applied in preference to Rule 3. To remove this, go to Rule 2 format, Fill and click "Clear"

That said, all this confusion is avoided if you use "Stop on True" and order them in the priority you want.

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