NORMDIST in Excel (Normal Distribution)

Normal Distribution in Excel (NORMDIST)

NORMDIST or normal distribution is an inbuilt statistical function of Excel that calculates the normal distribution of a data set for which the mean and standard deviation are given.

NORMDIST function accepts four arguments–X value, mean, standard deviation, and cumulative value. The Excel 2010 replaced the NORMDIST function with NORM.DIST function.


The syntax of the normal distributionNormal DistributionNormal Distribution is a bell-shaped frequency distribution curve which helps describe all the possible values a random variable can take within a given range with most of the distribution area is in the middle and few are in the tails, at the extremes. This distribution has two key parameters: the mean (µ) and the standard deviation (σ) which plays a key role in assets return calculation and in risk management more in Excel is mentioned as follows:

NORMDIST Formula in Excel

You are free to use this image on your website, templates etc, Please provide us with an attribution linkHow to Provide Attribution?Article Link to be Hyperlinked
For eg:
Source: NORMDIST in Excel (Normal Distribution) (

The arguments of the NORM.DIST function are listed as follows:

If the cumulative value is “true,” the function returns the cumulative normal distribution function (CDF). If the cumulative value is “false,” the function returns the normal probability density function (PDF).

Note: The NORMDIST function exists in the recent versions of Excel to support compatibility with the previous versions. However, it may not be available in future versions of Excel.

NORMDIST Formula in Excel 1

How to Use NORMDIST in Excel? (With Examples)

You can download this NORMDIST Function Excel Template here – NORMDIST Function Excel Template

Example #1

We have the stock price data of an organization. The stipulated stock price is 115, the overall average stock price is 90, and the standard deviation is 16.

We need to calculate the probability of the stock price at and below 115.

NORMDIST Function in Excel Example 1

Let us apply the NORM.DIST in Excel.

X is the initial stock price. The mean is the overall average price. The standard deviation is given in cell B4. The distribution type used is “1,” meaning TRUE.

NORMDIST Function in Excel Example 1-1

The result is 0.9409, which means roughly 94% of the stocks have a price below 115. In other words, the chance that the stock has a price above 115 is less than 6%.

NORMDIST Function in Excel Example 1-2

Let us change the distribution type to the normal probability density function, i.e., FALSE (0). We get the following result.

NORMDIST Function in Excel Example 1-3

The NORM.DIST function returns the value 0.0074, indicating that 0.74% of the stocks have their price equal to 115.

Example #2

Let us consider the following data for normal distribution in Excel.

  • Sample of the population (X) = 200
  • Mean or average value = 198
  • Standard deviation = 25
NORMDIST Function in Excel Example 2

Let us apply cumulative normal distribution in Excel.

NORMDIST Function in Excel Example 2-1

The normal distribution value is 0.53188, i.e., the probability is 53.18%.

NORMDIST Function in Excel Example 2-2

The Characteristics of the Normal Distribution Function

Frequently Asked Questions

#1 – What is the NORM.DIST function in Excel used for?

The NORM.DIST function calculates the PDF and the CDF of a data set. The function returns the probability that the variable X falls below or at a given value.

The NORM.DIST function is used in stock markets to quantify risk and return. It helps strike a balance between the risk and return of an investment. This function is also used in hypothesis testing.

#2 – How does the NORM.DIST function work in Excel?

The output of a normal distribution is a bell-shaped curve defined by its input value, X. The CDF returns the probability of a number below a given value. The PDF returns the probability of a number at a point in the data set.

If the cumulative value is “true,” the NORM.DIST function returns a value that is equal to the area on the left side of the input. However, if the cumulative value is “false,” the function returns a value that corresponds with the input value on the curve.

#3 – What is the NORM.S.DIST function in Excel?

The NORM.S.DIST function calculates the standard normal distribution for a specific value. The mean of a standard normal distribution is zero and the standard deviation is one.

The formula of NORM.S.DIST function is stated as follows: “=NORM.S.DIST(z,cumulative)”

“z” is the value for which we want the distribution. “Cumulative” determines the type of distribution to be returned.

Key Takeaways

Recommended Articles

This has been a guide to the NORMDIST function in Excel. Here we discuss how to use the Normal Distribution function in Excel along with examples and downloadable templates. You may also look at these useful Excel tools –

  • 35+ Courses
  • 120+ Hours
  • Full Lifetime Access
  • Certificate of Completion