# How to use the LCM function

**What is the LCM function?**

The LCM function calculates the least common multiple.

**What is the least common multiplier?**

The least common multiple is the smallest positive integer that is a multiple of all integer arguments.

**When is the LCM function useful?**

Use the LCM function to find fractions with different denominators.

**What is a fraction?**

A fraction has a numerator and a denominator:

- Numerator - The top number in a fraction.
- Denominator - The bottom number.

For example:

6/7

- The numerator is 6, meaning 6 parts.
- The denominator is 7, meaning the whole was split into 7 equal parts.

**How is the least common multiple calculated?**

Finding least common multiples is the product of two numbers divided by their greatest common divisor.

For example,

least common multiple(*number1*,*number2*) = (*number1***number2*) / greatest common divisor(*number1*,*number2*).

least common multiple(6,8) = 6*8/2 = 48/2 = 24

**What is the greatest common divisor?**

The greatest common divisor of two or more integers is the largest integer that divides them all. For two numbersÂ *number1*Â andÂ *number2*, it is the largest integer that divides bothÂ *number1*Â andÂ *number2*Â without remainder.

For example:

greatestÂ common divisor(8,12) = 4

This is because 4 is the largest number that divides both 8 and 12.

greatestÂ common divisor(18,24) = 6

6 is the greatest common factor of 18 and 24.

greatestÂ common divisor(10,15,25) = 5

5 is the largest number that divides 10, 15 and 25.

**What is a remainder?**

A remainder is the amount left over after dividing two integers.

The remainder is what is left after dividing two integers. If you divide 15 with 2 you get 7 and 1 is left over. 2*7 equals 14. 15 - 14 equals 1. The remainder is 1.

**What is a divisor?**

A divisor is a number that divides into another number either cleanly or leaving a remainder.

dividend / divisor = quotient( + remainder)

**What is a dividend?**

In division, the dividend is the number being divided.

For example, in the division:

15 / 5 = 3

15 is the dividend 5 is the divisor and 3 is the quotient

**What is a quotient?**

The quotient is the result when two numbers are divided.

**What is a factor?**

A factor is a number that divides evenly into another number, in other words, without leaving a remainder.

**When is the greatest common divisor useful?**

The GCD can be used to reduce fractions to their simplest form. For example, greatest common divisor(36,68) = 4 can simplify 36/68 to 9/17.

**What other Excel functions are about division, dividend, divisor, and quotient?**

Excel Function |
Description |

GCD | Returns the greatest common divisor of two numbers |

LCM | Returns the least common multiple of two numbers |

QUOTIENT | Returns the integer portion of a division between two numbers |

MOD | Returns the remainder after dividing num1 by num2 |

Formula in cell B3:

### Excel Function Syntax

LCM(*number1*, [*number2*], ...)

### Arguments

number1 |
Required. The number you want to calculate the least common multiple for. |

[number2] |
Optional. Up to 254 additional numbers. |

### Comments

The LCM function returns an error value if any argument is not a number.

### Functions in 'Math and trigonometry' category

The LCM function function is one of 73 functions in the 'Math and trigonometry' category.

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