Financial Modeling in Excel for Dummies (Wiley, 2017)

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book to review.
This book is a great introduction to Financial Modeling.
The content is easy to follow and gets you started on the right foot with lots of best practice advice.
The only downside of the book is the screen shots tend to include the whole screen rather than zoom in on the important part of the screen – many images are hard to read.
The book is a great primer for Danielle’s first book which allows you to learn even more about financial modeling.

The R Language

David Iseminger - Microsoft
2017-03-29

If you are into statistics then you probably already know about the R language – but if you don’t it may be worth looking at.

It is open source code that is built to handle statistics and big data. It has some limitations when used with Power BI but it can be used on its own.

This article looks at using visuals created with R in Power BI.

DAX Studio

DAX is the function and query language of PowerPivot and PowerBI. It has been around for a while, but it didn’t really have many editing tools until DAX Studio came around.

DAX Studio has been created by the SQLBI.com guys – the legends in PowerBI.

I saw a demo today at the Perth Modern Excel User Group at Microsoft Perth – its great.

Whilst it is a powerful editor, it is not just a code editor.

There are lots of options to allow you to optimise your DAX code. Lots of output options as well.

You can test and see how long it takes to run your DAX commands.

If you regularly use DAX in Power BI or PowerPivot then DAX Studio is a must have.

 

 

Hacking Power BI

Chris Webb
2017-04-11

Chris Webb’s BI website is a great resource on Power BI, DAX and Power Query and Power Pivot

This post shows how to hack DAX to display characters. Opens up some new possibilities.

 

Making Subtotals Bold

When you use the SUBTOTAL feature in the Data ribbon tab it automatically inserts subtotals in your list – see blog post on it here.

One problem with this is that is only makes the cell with the word Total bold – it doesn’t make the whole row bold.

If you want the whole row to be bold it isn’t hard to fix.

  1. Select the whole range involved.
  2. Use the grouping button 2 top left corner. See image below.
  3. Then hold the Alt key down and press the ; (semicolon key) – this selects just the visible cells.
  4. Then press Ctrl + b to bold it.
  5. Click another cell to reset the range and you are done.

Power Query M Language Editor

Power Query (Get & Transform) uses the M language to allow you to customise and build in flexibility to your queries.

Currently writing the M language is tricky to write. It is case sensitive and there is no built-in help to assist you using the language.

Apparently Microsoft is working on creating an M editor, but there is no time line on when it will be ready.

This article takes you through some steps to create your own editor using Notepad ++.

If you use Power Query a lot then this may be worthwhile.