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Computing N in a TVM calculation (receive Error 5 message)

I was wondering if there is a way to calculate the number of time periods, N, if the PV, FV and I/Y are entered? It doesn't seem to work for me.

For e.g. I/Y = 5/12 %, PV = 35,000, FV = 100,000, PMT = 0 (not applicable)
But when I press CPT and then press N it doesn't work (it gives an Error 5 message). I even tried P/Y = 12, I/Y = 5%, PV = 35,000, FV = 100,000 and PMT = 0 (not applicable) and it still gives me an error message.

If you could help, that would be greatly appreciated.

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  • ioanapopa850 Jan 19, 2009

    I have the same issue when trying to calculate I/Y, when everything elese given. Same Error 5 message.
    I was wondering if there is something wrong with it or it's just a wrong value somewhere in it's memory?


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Just found out the answer!
Apparently you can't have both FV and PV positive. Try the calculation with one of them being negative.

Posted on Jan 19, 2009

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SOURCE: Calculating TVM variables I/Y &

Error 5 indicates that no solution exists. In this particular case, you're asking for the interest rate on a savings account that pays you 10,000 now and an additional 20,000 10 years later. (Or a loan where you pay 10,000 now and an additional 20,000 10 years later.)

Either PV or FV should be negative. For example, if you deposit 10,000 in a savings account and withdraw 20,000 10 years later, use -10,000 for FV.

Posted on Aug 08, 2011

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