Right anti join

One of the join kinds available in the Merge dialog box in Power Query is a right anti join, which brings in only rows from the right table that don't have any matching rows from the left table. More information: Merge operations overview

Right anti join example

Figure shows a table on the left with Date, CountryID, and Units columns. The emphasized CountryID column contains values of 1 in rows 1 and 2, 3 in row 3, and 2 in row 4. A table on the right contains ID and Country columns. The emphasized ID column contains values of 3 in row 1 (denoting Panama) and 4 in row 2 (denoting Spain). A table below the first two tables contains Date, CountryID, Units, and Country columns. The table has one row, with the Date, CountryID and Units set to null, and the Country set to Spain.

This article uses sample data to show how to do a merge operation with the right anti join. The sample source tables for this example are:

  • Sales: This table includes the fields Date, CountryID, and Units. CountryID is a whole number value that represents the unique identifier from the Countries table.

    Sales table containing Date, CountryID, and Units columns, with CountryID set to 1 in rows 1 and 2, 3 in row 3, and 2 in row 4

  • Countries: This is a reference table with the fields id and Country. The id field represents the unique identifier for each record.

    Countries table with id set to 3 in row 1 and 4 in row 2 and Country set to Panama in row 1 and Spain in row 2

In this example, you'll merge both tables, with the Sales table as the left table and the Countries table as the right one. The join will be made between the following columns.

Field from the Sales table Field from the Countries table
CountryID id

The goal is to create a table like the following, where only the rows from the right table that don't match any from the left table are kept. As a common use case, you can find all the rows that are available in the right table but aren't found in the left table.

Table created from Right anti join

Right anti join final table with the Date, CountryID, Units, and Country header columns, containing one row with null in all columns except Country, which contains Spain.

To do a right anti join

  1. Select the Sales query, and then select Merge queries.
  2. In the Merge dialog box, under Right table for merge, select Countries.
  3. In the Sales table, select the CountryID column.
  4. In the Countries table, select the id column.
  5. In the Join kind section, select Right anti.
  6. Select OK.

Merge dialog box showing the results of following the previous right anti join procedure

Tip

Take a closer look at the message at the bottom of the dialog box that reads "The selection excludes 1 of 2 rows from the second table." This message is crucial to understanding the result that you get from this operation.

In the Countries table, you have the Country Spain with an id of 4, but there are no records for CountryID 4 in the Sales table. That's why only one of two rows from the right (second) table found a match. Because of how the right anti join works, you'll never see any rows from the left (first) table in the output of this operation.

From the newly created Countries column, expand the Country field. Don't select the Use original column name as prefix check box.

Expand table column for Country

After performing this operation, you'll create a table that looks like the following image. The newly expanded Country field doesn't have any values. That's because the right anti join doesn't bring any values from the left tableā€”it only keeps rows from the right table.

Right anti join final table

Final table with the Date, CountryID, Units, and Country header columns, containing one row with null in all columns except Country, which contains Spain.