When you’re trying to show a negative amount of money, there are some formatting styles you need to know. This article will explain all the relevant information that should help you to write negative currency better in your text.
How to Write Negative Currency in Text
To write negative money or currency, you can say “a loss of x amount” or “x amount deficit.” These are the simplest ways to explain a negative number. If you want number-based choices, you can use ($100m) or -$100m, but these are dependent on your style.
For the most part, the minus symbol shouldn’t be used. It is available as an option, and some online banking apps will use the minus symbol for overdrafts and other balances.
While the minus symbol is recognizable to the majority of people, the parentheses option is considered to be more formal.
How to Write Negative Dollars Amount
In the US, dollars are used, and you need to know what the negative amount looks like. For the negative amount with a dollar sign, you should write ($10) or -$10. You can also write a long-form sentence that says “a loss of $10” or something similar.
Most people wonder if the negative before the dollar sign. If you’re using the negative value (the minus symbol), then it will come before the dollar sign.
If you’re using parentheses, then it comes both before and after the dollar sign (and the number of dollars that is being shown).
- -$10 million
- ($5 million)
- A loss of $16,000
How to Write Negative Pounds Amount
The UK uses pounds as its currency. The rules are very much the same as stated previously. Most of the time, parentheses are used to show the negative value of amounts of money. Therefore, (£20) is correct to show -£20. You can also use the minus symbol.
You will often hear people using long-form sentences in formal writing that don’t use negative symbols or signs at all. They might say “a loss of three pounds” or something similar to show that a negative amount of money has been used.
Just like in the US, it’s common for the minus symbol to be used informally. This is easily recognizable by most people outside of the financial sector.
If you’re in a job that handles money a lot, you should be more familiar with the parentheses. This tends to be the more formal choice for negative values when handling money.
- A £10,000 deficit
How to Write Negative Euros Amount
In Europe, where euros are used as currency, you will find that the minus symbol and parentheses are used. It’s common for people to use these forms around the world because they are the ones that are easiest to use, and most people know how they work.
It’s also possible to say “a loss of” if you’re looking for a long-form sentence that might work better in formal writing.
As before, the use of the minus symbol tends to be more informal. The parentheses work best when you’re talking or writing to people who know more about the financial side of things (like an accountant).
- A loss of €99.
How to Write Negative Currency in Parentheses
It is formal and correct to write negative currency in parentheses. It would help to know the correct way to write this, as many people wonder about it. Generally, the dollar sign and amount listed should all be contained within the parentheses.
You may be wondering, does the dollar sign go inside or outside parentheses? Luckily, it’s fairly easy to understand once you’ve seen it written down.
- Correct: ($400)
- Incorrect $(400)
It’s very common for people to use this format in formal writing. You should always include the dollar sign inside the parentheses to show that it’s part of the whole negative amount or loss.
Including the dollar sign outside of the parentheses does not make much sense. The “400” used in the example looks a little peculiar when it is not preceded by the dollar sign.
There are no other ways that you should write dollars inside parentheses. Just stick to the dollar sign and the number inside the two parentheses, and you’ll have it right.
You may also like:
How Do You Say Dollar Amounts? (Full Explanation)
Euro Symbol Before or After the Number? (20€ or €20)
How to Write Euros (Full Explanation with Examples)
How to Write USD Amount in Words (Full Explanation)
Dollar Sign Before or After the Number? (20$ or $20)
Martin holds a Master’s degree in Finance and International Business. He has six years of experience in professional communication with clients, executives, and colleagues. Furthermore, he has teaching experience from Aarhus University. Martin has been featured as an expert in communication and teaching on Forbes and Shopify. Read more about Martin here.