The LEAST() function returns the least or smallest value in a list of values. It needs at least one argument to work with, and if you mix different types, like a text and a number, it will return an error.
For example, comparing the greatest value among 4, "two", and 9 would result in an error.
The syntax for the LEAST() function is as follows:
- value_1: Represents the first value.
- value_n: Represents one or more additional values, separated by commas.
- NULL values in the list will be ignored.
- The result will be NULL if all the expressions evaluate to NULL.
Below are several examples of the LEAST() function:
Consider the following example:
The query will return 3, the smallest value among the provided values.
String comparison is also supported, as shown below:
In this case, the result will be 'a', as it is the smallest string.
NULL values are ignored when determining the smallest value:
The result will be the smallest non-NULL value, which is 5.
Negative numbers can also be compared:
This query will return -8, the smallest value among the provided numbers.
Suppose we have a table named grades containing columns x, y, and z.
To find the smallest value among these columns, you can use the following query:
This query will add a new column named least_grade to the result, displaying the smallest value among columns x, y, and z.