Excel Formula Explained : Correlation Matrix

I was asked two days ago how to compute a correlation matrix using an excel formula.

Q. What is Correlation matrix ?
It is simply defined as the measure of the relationship between two or more variables. Coefficients have a range of -1 to 1; -1 is the perfect negative correlation while +1 is the perfect positive correlation. It is also called multiple correlation coefficient. The post below explains how to calculate multiple correlation coefficient in Excel.

Excel Formula :

For example, you have a 5 X 5 matrix and data for variables are entered in cells B3:F50 so paste this formula in cell J4
In this case, firstvariable_range is B3:B50.

Download the workbook used in this example so you can copy and practice the formula.

How it works :
Let's take data for 5 variables and try to figure out the correlation between them.
1. CORREL Function
Usage : It returns the correlation coefficient between two variables.
Syntax : = CORREL ( first variable_range, second variable_range )
For variable 1 and variable 2, the syntax would be =CORREL(B3:B50, C3:C50)

2. OFFSET Function
Usage : It returns a reference to a range that is a given number of rows and columns from a given reference
Syntax : = OFFSET (reference range, number of rows up or down, number of columns to the left or right)
For example, = OFFSET($B$3:$B$50,,1) means one column to the right of B3:C50 i.e. C3:C50

3. ROWS / COLUMNS Function
Usage : It returns the number of rows or columns in a range.
Syntax : = ROWS ( range )
For example, = ROWS ($1:2) returns 2.OR = COLUMNS ($A:B) returns 2

4. Dynamic CORREL Function
For variable 2 and variable 3,
i. ROWS($1:2) returns 2. Hence, ROWS($1:2)-1 returns 1
ii. OFFSET($B$3:$B$50,,ROWS($1:2)-1) returns reference of range C3:C50 i.e. data set for variable 2
iii. COLUMNS($A:C) returns 3. Hence, COLUMNS($A:C)-1 returns 2
iv. OFFSET($B$3:$B$50,,COLUMNS($A:C)-1) returns reference of variable 3

How to use it:
Paste the formula below to N rows x N columns. In 5 X 5 matrix , paste down to 5 rows and right to 5 columns. 

You can download the working workbook by clicking on the link below -
Download the workbook
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About Author:

Deepanshu founded ListenData with a simple objective - Make analytics easy to understand and follow. He has over 8 years of experience in data science. During his tenure, he has worked with global clients in various domains like Banking, Insurance, Telecom and Human Resource.

6 Responses to "Excel Formula Explained : Correlation Matrix"
  1. Awesome, this saved me tons of time! Thank you for the step-by-step instructions.

  2. Thanks a lot!!


  4. Thank you very helpful

  5. That's fantastic !!! Thank you so much !!!!

  6. could you please write us the mathematical equation used to calculate the cross correlation coefficient.


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